Friday, 19 February 2016
I remember the day when "No Platform " was reserved for violent fascists, denying them public speaking opportunities. But now it seems it is being used to silence debate.
Currently there are some in the NUS ( National Union of students) who are opposing a plan to invite Nick Lowles director of the anti-campaigning group Hope Not Hate, to speak on an anti-racist platform because they claim he is islamophobic. His organisation I have supported because of its campaigns to counter racism and fascism, who has actually worked to challenge anti-muslim hatred and bias directed at them.
This comes after a NUS LGBT officer called Fran Cowling accused Peter Tatchell - who has stood up for the LGBT community for the past 30 years,a hero of mine since his battle for bermondsey in the 1980's, risking his life and sustaining injuries, being mocked by rhe press, subjected to homophobic abuse by his political opponents, and arrested by the police as he fought for equality and free speech - of being racist and transphobic .
Simply absurd and mindblowing.
Two individuals who have stood yes against Islamist extremism, but equally against anti-muslim prejudice. For unity and solidarity. against all hate. It seems that anyone making the case for free speech or expressing an opinion nowadays contrary to those of others is subject to an intense, widespread and vitriolic attacks. Anybody who diagrees with them is blocked. They are branded racists, transphobes, bigots and sexists. in what seems like a witch hunt of McCarthyite dimension, aided by a virtual mob on facebook or twitter ready to back them up.
When freedom of speech is systematically threatened like this, I think we have a bit of a problem.
At the end of the day think the NUS should concentrate on opposing those Tory vermin currently in power, who are destroing everything fair and decent here in the UK and taking aim at real spreaders of hatred and fascist threat, organisations like the English Defence Leaque, Britain First and Pegida. We should not misuse the discourse of free speech.
Posted by teifidancer at 16:01