Keyboard Commando – Sorry students, but your free education demands are wrong

Mac Olsen

Left-wing causes are on the march everywhere, as a recent a Canada News Wire release shows. On Oct. 26, CNW issued one entitled ‘Students’ Call for Free Education Receives Unprecedented Support’.

It said that the Canadian Federation of Students has the support of 83 labour unions, civil society organizations and community groups.

The CFS is going to hold a “national day of action” on Nov. 2, calling for free education for post-secondary students. The Canadian Labour Congress is certainly on board.

“Students have been there for us on the picket lines and in our campaigns to defend public services,” said Hassan Yussuff, president of the CLC.
“This historic cooperation demonstrates the urgent need for action and our success will show the strength of our movements’ unity. I will be there on November 2 to demand free education now. It’s long overdue.”

The CFS must be walking on air, especially with this pronouncement.

“As students, we are motivated and lifted up by the support of so many community organizations, civil society groups and labour partners,” said Bilan Arte, CFS national chairperson. “After decades of damage to post-secondary education in Canada, our time has come.”

And if you look at the list of left-wing organizations that are part of this so-called “movement,” it will confirm why we have stand up to and put them in their place: Black Lives Matter – Toronto; Fossil Free Canada; and the Young Communist League.

Why should Canadian taxpayers give in to their demands and provide post-secondary students a free ride? Moreover, why do the CFS and their left-wing allies think they have a right to entitlement? I never did.

When I went through post-secondary education years ago, I accepted the responsibility for paying back my federal and provincial student loans.
Yes, I received reductions for both debts, which I appreciated – and which I have no problem with for post-secondary students now.

But I never believed that I had the right to a “free education” then, and I certainly don’t think that taxpayers like myself should have to bear the financial burden the CFS and their allies are demanding.

True, there is a major problem with student debt loads and the tuition fees post-secondary institutions charge. But it will not be resolved by imposing an undue financial burden on taxpayers.

One example of how debt relief can be provided is for medical students. When they are recruited for service in remote areas of the country, they can be – and often are – provided with debt reductions in exchange for serving a defined amount of time.

Now, this strategy may not work for those going into other employment fields following their post-secondary education. But it can be used as a framework to develop other debt reduction strategies.

In the end, never think that taxpayers are to be burdened entirely with student debtloads. Just as I had to, all post-secondary students must accept responsibility and pay back their debts.

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