LifeChoice UNSW President Anna Fernon said that the society was established to promote a pro-life perspective on the issues of abortion and euthanasia in Australian society through informed discussion. “I am disappointed by the blatant ideological bias in Arc’s decision”, said Ms Fernon.
“To not affiliate LifeChoice reflects the prejudices of a few students who sit in positions of power, not the interests of the wider student body.”
“Abortion and euthanasia provoke many perspectives and opinions; however the right of university students to enter into discourse on controversial issues is not contingent on whether their fellow students agree with them.”
Ms Fernon added, “This is not about the prolife/prochoice dichotomy. Many people who disagree with our views, such as Peter Singer, support our right to be represented on campus”, referring to the foremost Australian ethicist, who earlier this year voiced his support for the affiliation of LifeChoice USYD.
Ms Fernon further stated, “This censoring of our voice on campus is extremely destructive to the quality of intellectual discourse that universities are built to promote. This action is an underhanded attempt to silence one side of an important debate.”
“LifeChoice asks all students, whether they agree with the values of our club or not, to support freedom of speech and uphold the integrity of Arc and our University,” concluded Ms Fernon.
Members of LifeChoice UNSW are calling for the student union to reconsider its decision in light of what it means for freedom of speech on campus.
Related link: www.theaustralian.com.au, www.smh.com.au
Background – LifeChoice UNSW held its Inaugural General Meeting on September 10 to fulfil requirements for affiliation with Arc.