Letter: What I care about is being heard — not being preached to

Dear Mr. Lin,

My name is Sam. I am a fourth-year accounting and business technology management student, currently on a co-op term, and am returning to school in September 2018. I am fully Jewish, meaning that as far back as anyone in my family can remember, we have all been Jewish. I attended Jewish school for 12 years, followed by 3 years at public high school, and identify with Conservative Judaism.

Writing this, I have no intention of being the “Court Jew,” meaning that my opinions absolutely do not represent the opinions of all Jewish people, on campus or otherwise.

During the first debate, you said that the biggest issue facing the AMS is that “there aren’t enough Christians at UBC.” What I want to ask you is: what is “enough Christians at UBC”? Would that be a 100 per cent Christian campus? As AMS president, how would you measure your success, and why do you think this is the biggest issue?

When a Jewish student asked you how your gospel would affect them, you answered that it is “a good opportunity to have these options.” To explain to you how I feel about this, I will sidetrack a bit.

I don’t like ketchup. Yes, I have tried ketchup, and I still don’t like it. When I go to the grocery store, I see ketchup and I know that it is an option. My friends like ketchup, and they can eat ketchup if they want, but I don’t want to.

That is how I feel about Christianity. I am familiar with the options available — the Old and New Testament, Christian and Muslim values, but I still want to practice Judaism. There is a big difference between having a conversation to learn about values of a different religion and preaching gospel. I haven’t been able to find examples of how you suggest interfaith dialogue on your website, where you suggest bringing in a variety of Christian speakers with no other representation.

What I want from the AMS is to feel heard, and your policies seem to be all about preaching. Nowhere on your website have I found out how you plan to hear what students want and serve their best interests through anything other than preaching. I want to wish you the best of luck with your campaign. I am glad that Christianity has been such a positive part of your life, but it isn’t right for me.