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December

10

2013

Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s independent newspaper since 2009.

/03/

University doesn’t track sexual assaults on campus

legacy /04 / Mandela’s remembered

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Masthead

The Runner is student-owned and operated by Kwantlen Polytechnic University students, published under the Polytechnic Ink Publishing Society. Arbutus 3710/3720 12666 72 Ave. Surrey, B.C, V3W 2M8 778.565.3801

The Runner

December 10 / 2013

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Does Kwantlen do enough to make you feel safe?

www.runnermag.ca Vol. 06, Issue no. 05 December 10, 2013 ISSN# 1916 8241

EDITORIAL DIVISON Coordinating Editor / Matt DiMera editor@runnermag.ca / 778.565.3803

Deputy Editor / Samantha Thompson deputy@runnermag.ca

“Yeah, I’d like to see more resources, because I just feel like everybody should be aware of what’s going on. Nobody should think that nothing is wrong—when it is.” Katie Clarke, 20, Nursing

Acting Media Editor / Brian Evancic media@runnermag.ca

Production Editor / Roland Nguyen production@runnermag.ca

Associate Photo Editor / Mark Stewart Cover Art: Roland Nguyen. Contributors: Samantha Lego, Shandis Harrison.

BUSINESS DIVISION Operation Manager / Victoria Almond office@runnermag.ca / 778.565.3801 The Runner recognises that our work, both in and out of the office, takes place on unceded Coast and Strait Salish territories, specifically the shared traditional territories of the Kwantlen, Katzie, Semiahmoo, Sto:lo and Tsawwassen First Nations. Our name is inspired by the hun’qumi’num meaning of Kwantlen, which is tireless hunters or tireless runners. Just as Kwantlen is adaptable and changing so is The Runner.

“There’s a Safe Walk? No, I don’t really feel unsafe walking on campus. It depends, I guess. [The UBC situation] has affected me because it’s not something I really thought about before, you think your university is your safe haven.” Isabella Aidar, 22, Creative Writing

“It’s kind of a safety thing [that] I think people should know [about] … if there are any incidents or not. It should be all backed up. It’s something that happens everywhere and the fact that they don’t have any resources, it makes you feel like [the] security of girls and women doesn’t matter to the school.” Sharon Sen, 26, Anthropology


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The Runner

News

December 10 / 2013

“I would love to have more information on things that are happening on campus related to attacks, and even minor incidents, because then we are at least aware that these things are [occurring]. Otherwise, there’s this blanket sense of security—a false one, and we don’t actually know what’s [going on], on our campus. It’s important to me that we … know the real things that are happening, not just speculation.” Jessica Lar-Son, 22, English

University records don’t track sexual assaults Campus security chief says old reporting system wasn’t universal.

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Samantha Lego CONTRIBUTOR

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Kwantlen Polytechnic University doesn’t keep track of how many sexual assaults have been reported on its campuses, according to internal records. Although campus is meant to be a safe space, recent publicized sexual attacks like those at UBC have generated questions around whether or not universities are doing all they can to make sure students are protected while at school. Records from 2008 to 2012 obtained through freedom of information laws show that KPU only tracks aggregate numbers, lumping in physical assaults with sexual ones. The three categories from the reports are violence - physical, violence - verbal and violence - stalking. There is no other available information to the public regarding incidences of sexual assault or harassment on campus. Catherine Dube, KPU’s director of the office of student risk and judicial affairs, stopped returning The Runner’s emails after repeated efforts to arrange an interview. Harry McNeil, head of KPU’s security, says he knows about the issue and is pushing to rectify it. He envisions a future data

collection system with options for better defining the type of assault or harassment. “We should be able to bring up a list saying, this is the number of sexual assaults on campus, this is the number of physical assaults or minor assaults, and actually draw a chart out,” he says.

“The silence around an issue doesn’t mean the issue isn’t happening. It just means no one is talking about it.” -Kari Michaels, WOOW co-founder Previously, there was no universal reporting system for KPU security, so generating figures from the last five years is impossible. McNeil says the reports aren’t detailed enough for reliable statistics, since the old reports were handwritten, undetailed and inaccurate. “I’m trying to change the culture of reporting so it’s factual and actual,” he says. “We [KPU security] haven’t collected the data [in the past], but now we understand there is a necessity. We’re a long way from where we should be, but we’re leaps and bounds from where we were.” In light of the recent string of sexual attacks occurring on the UBC’s Vancouver campus, sexual and gender-based violence at Canadian universities is receiving more attention. UBC has numerous resources posted on their

security website including the Sexual Assault Support Centre, links to the Counselling Services and predominantly displayed safety tips. It has increased security patrols since the attacks, and promotes the AMS SafeWalk program. Conversely, Kwantlen does not outwardly offer such resources. However, Kwantlen Security has its own Safe Walk program, which provides escorted walks on the university’s four campuses. It is advertised only on their webpage and is used mostly by staff, says McNeil. Currently there are no advertised programs by the university to combat sexual violence and any services that are provided are through counselling and judicial affairs. “The silence around an issue doesn’t mean the issue isn’t happening. It just means no one is talking about it,” says Kari Michaels, co-founder of Women Organizing Opportunities for Women (WOOW). According to statistics provided by Fraser Health, only 10 per cent of sexual assaults on women are reported to the authorities. “No one is getting the help they need and maybe looking elsewhere and not finding that community on campus. which is not the university that we want to see,” says Michaels. As Kwantlen’s feminist club and women’s collective, WOOW’s concern is that, “the response the university takes is either victim

blaming, or is just a Band-Aid sort of service.” “We want to give you the help that you need on your terms,” Michaels says. WOOW is looking to implement a sexual health and awareness centre, and the Kwantlen Student Association recently approved a proposal for a peer-support centre and the women’s group would like to see a sexual assault support centre along with it. Providing support systems and offering awareness campaigns is another aspect of the solution to address the lack of resources available. Starting in January, WOOW will run a campaign that helps identify abusive behaviour in the hopes that people saying or doing certain things will recognize that their conduct could be seen as harmful or abusive. “It’s one thing to identify victims and to tell victims, ‘This is where to go for help,’” says Michaels. “It’s another thing to let people know that their behaviour is abusive, and that they have a responsibility to stop.” If you see anything suspicious or feel unsafe on campus, please call security through their direct line service on pay phones, call boxes or red phones located around all four campuses. If you need to report an incident occurring on campus, please email judicialaffairs@ kwantlen.ca or make an appointment with a university counsellor at counsel@kpu.ca.

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Opinion

The Runner

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December 10 / 2013

Mandela

Everything seems impossible until it’s done Remembering Mandela as a man more than his quotes.

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Samantha Thompson DEPUTY EDITOR

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I remember when I first learned about Nelson Mandela. Fittingly, I was in South Africa. We were in Soweto, one of the nation’s betterknown townships, which was where Mandela used to live. I had heard much about Mandela since arriving in Johannesburg, but it was in that moment that I felt as though I had finally caught a glimpse of what Mandela meant to South Africa. From the house I went to Robben Island, and peered into the cell that imprisoned Mandela for 18 years. It was clear to me then, that Mandela had fought long and hard for what he believed in. There is no leader of a country, past or present, that compares to Mandela. Not specifically in his actions, but how much love so many of the people I met held for him— it was unrivalled by anything else I’ve ever seen. Unlike most world leaders, and Raffi, I never met Mandela. But yet I left South Africa determined to learn everything I could about the man. He inspired me at a very young age, as he did for many people around the globe. There is no question that his influence on South Africa and the world was great. However, one of the most dangerous things that can happen with the death of revolutionaries like Mandela is the media’s (and politicians, etc.) innate ability to portray only the side that provides comfort to the people. Mandela was one of the “nation’s greatest heroes,” he was “brave,” and Harper called him one of the world’s “great moral leaders.” He is made out to be a sort of symbol of the state, but when he first started

fighting the system, he was called a terrorist. Some of his most quotable quotes emphasize his love for peace and reconciliation, and these are values he held dearly throughout his life. In the media coverage surrounding his death, his non-violent approach to change was emphasized. However, Mandela’s journey as a revolutionary was not entirely peaceful—it couldn’t be. He was fighting against powerful forces, and at the time the idea of people of colour being made equal to whites was outrageous. When we remember him only as someone who achieved great change with peaceful actions, it is a disservice to all he fought for, and all he went through. Mandela was committed to non-violent protest, but eventually he cofounded a militant group called Umkhonto we Sizwe, which planned on overthrowing the apartheid government. He reached a point in his advocacy where non-violent means were no longer an option, which sadly is frequently what happens in many of the world’s most famous fights for human rights. In these earlier years Mandela was extremely controversial, and it was not until he was released from prison that his activism began to be internationally recognized. Even then, he remained on the Terrorist Watch List in the U.S. until 2008. Unfortunately, the privileged voices that write history will remember him in a way that does not encourage revolution or uprising. It happens with any revolutionary who is remembered fondly in history. Those who aren’t, like Malcolm X for example, are portrayed of lovers of violence even if they only resorted to violence because they felt it was the only available option. With Malcolm X, he wasn’t always a proponent of violence as

a means of sparking change. But he looked at Martin Luther King, Jr.’s peaceful protests, and felt they were too easily ignored by America. Although King now is remembered as an American hero (even though he, too, suffered the trials of historical misrepresentation of ideals post-mortem), it can be argued that X’s approach to the civil rights movement enabled King to accomplish what he did with peaceful means—the government, in particular, saw him as a less radical alternative to X that they could actually work with. Without X, it is very probable that King would not have been successful in his quest for equality. A blog called Class Snuggle recently posted a piece in response to Mandela’s death, and the media’s reaction to it. “Nelson Mandela used peaceful means when he could, and violent means when he couldn’t,” the post reads. “For this, during his life they called him a terrorist, and after his death they’ll call him a pacifist — all to neutralize the revolutionary potential of his legacy, and the lessons to be drawn from it.” Non-violent approaches to change are unquestionably favourable, but history has proven that too often some form of violence is needed in order to get the wheels moving. It happened with the American civil rights movement, and it happened with the eradication of South Africa’s apartheid. It is crucial that we recognize all that was sacrificed in order to make gains for human rights, instead of ignoring the uglier side of a historical event because it makes us uncomfortable. Each time a revered leader who had radical ideas in life passes on, it is sadly crucial that they be portrayed as someone aligned with the state and its systems, instead of as some-

Letter to the Editor Corporate partners not worth the price I and many of my colleagues take issue with Kwantlen’s partnerships with the likes of multinational corporations such as Coca-Cola and Sodexo. Coca-Cola is known worldwide for pollution, human rights abuses such as child labour and union busting through campaigns of intimidation through murder and rape. Sodexo also fights against worker unionization and owns and runs private prisons throughout the world which represent a stain on the fundamental principles of justice. Why is then that Kwantlen got into bed with these corporate criminals and dragged us, the students, into being complicit in their crimes? Their privatization of our freedom of choice of food and drink on campus limits us to unhealthy foods and immoral options. This coupled with the lack of water fountains which creates a funnel toward these corporate giants leaves me shaking my head. Is what we get in return worth having partnership with these companies? How is it that one meager bursary from billion dollar per year corporation Coca-Cola is enough to tip the balance in favour of students rather than our corporate sponsors? I don’t think any price is worth getting into bed with these corporate giants is worth it when we have a huge local community of potential sponsors that we could look to and create long lasting relationships with. Our student association needs to get back in order and get student’s attention regarding this issue so we can look for an alternative that actually has some benefit for students.

Miles Maclean

3rd YEAR, CRIMINOLOGY one working against it. If they are not portrayed this way, capitalist states that exist the world over run the risk of losing all their power, because a figure like Mandela dying could finally be the spark that jumpstarts a widespread fight for equality. Mandela was a great man, but realistically the racism and classism that he fought against all his life still exist, including in Canada. He is an inspiration, but he has the potential to motivate a full-on revolution. The longer we act as though nothing is wrong with our society, the worse things will become. Mandela’s legacy will live on, but our fight is far from over. We cannot allow the media’s portrayal of Mandela to make us forget about all he was up against in the struggle to end apartheid. It is our turn now, to do something—even if it means leaving our comforts behind.


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The Runner

Opinion

December 10 / 2013

05

The man, the legend Looking back on Harper’s 2013.

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/

Samantha Thompson DEPUTY EDITOR

One thing that politicians rely on in order to be successful is the short-term memory of their voters, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper is no exception. He can do some ridiculous things, but unfortunately voters quickly forget about everything as soon as they head to the polls. As we go into 2014, which will be a very important election year, it’s a chance to change things. Maybe if we take some time now to look back on the funniest things that happened with Harper this year, we’ll have a better understanding of Ottawa come E-Day (who am I kidding? This is just an excuse to laugh at the hilarity that exists in the House of Commons). Our Top Three:

Pandas After many months of boredom, March finally brought with it the moment Canadians everywhere were waiting for: the arrival of Er

Shun and Da Mao, two pandas from China who have come to Canada for a 10-year visit. It was a huge deal, because Harper has been able to use the pandas as a great tool for getting Canadians to not care about anything else. The pandas are meant to symbolize our glowing relationship with China, but in reality they’re a distraction away from all the cuts to social programs and anything unrelated to the economy and profit. Sure, that’s pretty depressing—but the good news is, we’ll get to watch these pandas grow into strapping young bears over the next decade. Yay!

The Joker It is thought by many that Harper is a robot. It seems plausible enough, what with his Lego hair and icy cold stares. Plus he’s pretty much always in a suit, except for at the Calgary Stampede where obviously he dons some nice plaid and a cowboy hat. What all of this equates to is a leader that is not friendly or cuddly at all, but he keeps getting re-elected because he seems strong, or fierce, or something. But in June, Canadians were given a wonderful gift: a “leaked”

video (it had suspiciously convenient timing) of Harper appearing to be human. It’s 2011, he’s standing at a podium, and he’s supposed to be making a speech, but instead he does canny impressions of his predecessors, like Joe Clark and John Diefenbaker. His smiles are genuine, and he’s laughing at his own jokes…and it actually makes you want to hate him a little bit less. Magical.

THE 1000-WORD PHOTO: In October, the most beautiful sight topped my newsfeed: a photo of Stephen Harper speaking in the House of Commons, very seriously. In the background, a blurry figure is throwing his head back, clapping his hands together, in what can be described as none other than a guffaw. A guffaw! And when you look a little closer, the figure is Thomas Mulcair, leader of the NDP! What a treat! I laughed so hard and had tears streaming down my face. Even now, it is such a comedic gem. It’s important for politicians to be respectful of one another in the House (which they aren’t), but sometimes a genuine reaction is an easy reminder that politicians are people, too. Unless they’re a robot, like Harps.

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06

Procrastination

The Runner

December 10 / 2013

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BC’s Busiest Thursday Night 1.99 High Balls Dec 12 - Bonzai Thurs Dec 19 - Santa’s Ugly Sweater Xmas Party Dec 26 - Boxing Day Party

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Horoscope Sagitarius Nov. 23 - Dec 21

Capricorn Dec. 22 - Jan 20

This holiday season, plan a safe ride home; it’s not like you’re the mayor or anything.

Moustache rides are no longer charity work; to everything there is a season.

If you hang out with those hipsters for long enough, someone may have sex with you ironically.

Aries Mar 21 - Apr 19

Taurus Apr 20 - May 20

Gemini May 21 - Jun 20

Make sure your sweetie knows just how special they are by constantly shit-talking your ex.

Beware holiday shopping crowds.

Congratulations! If you can read this, you don’t go to UFV.

Did you know that your student health plan also covers your pets? Your dog’s anal glands are in good hands.

Virgo Aug 24 - Sept 23

Libra Sept 24 - Oct 23

Scorpio Oct 24 - Nov 22

For what it’s worth, that creepy guy on the bus thinks that yoga pants look good on all shapes and sizes.

Your date will be impressed with your worldliness when you attempt to pay for their drink with Bitcoins.

‘Tis the season for crantinis and remorse.

Leo Jul 24 - Aug 23

For thoose scolars of poesey who do beseeche ther Goddes for ther divyne intervencion, the stars haf seyd thus: ‘Villain, ye art swyved.’

Aquarius Jan 21 - Feb 19

Pisces Feb 20 - Mar 20

Whenever life gets your down, remember that it was economically feasible for someone to quit her job to write dinosaur porn.

Cancer Jun 21 - Jul 23


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The Runner

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No. 84

Procrastination

December 10 / 2013

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Fri,  Jan  31,  2014  

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