Tricky really

Or perhaps not so much:

Progressive politics has seriously lost its way. When feminists who have spent decades challenging sexism, racism, and homophobia are viewed as a risk to the wellbeing of students, something has gone very wrong indeed. Linda Bellos became the most recent feminist whose invitation to speak was withdrawn for raising questions about the direction in which modern-day gender politics is heading. Bellos, who is responsible for establishing Black History Month in Britain, was uninvited by the Beard Society, a “gender and feminist group” within Cambridge University.

During her address to Peterhouse College, Bellos told organisers she planned to publicly question “some of the trans politics … which seems to assert the power of those who were previously designated male to tell lesbians, and especially lesbian feminists, what to say and what to think”. In response, a representative of the Beard Society responded: “I’m sorry but we’ve decided not to host you. I too believe in freedom of expression, however Peterhouse is as much a home as it is a college. The welfare of our students in this instance has to come first.”

Regardless of your views on gender, Bellos speaking at Cambridge University in no way compromises the welfare of its students. It is ludicrous to claim that someone who has committed her adult life to liberation politics is a risk to the wellbeing of those who listen to her perspective – and deeply insulting. Black, female, Jewish and lesbian feminist, Bellos is not exactly a preacher of hate.

Strike to the root of this. Society looking for a speaker, once they hear what she would speak about they decide “Nah, thanks anyway.”

Shrug, their room, their society, their speaker’s budget, what the hell has this to do with anyone else?

If the government says Bellos can’t speak that’s a problem, if the university authorities insist that’s a problem, but an inquiry about a private invitation made and then withdrawn?

22 thoughts on “Tricky really”

  1. Eating each other.

    I recognise that the fact amuses me, but in the long run this is the end of Western Civilisation. These are not our values and we will pay.

    The neo-marxists are currently winning.

  2. I’m not sure I’d describe British universities as private organisations. A huge percentage of their income is from the state.

    Not that I think campus politics really matters any longer. You’ve got ideas, post something on a blog or Medium.

  3. When I was at university (early nineties), when I hired a room I was specifically required to fill in a freedom of speech section on the booking form. It stated that I agreed to let any speaker finish what they were saying, and not to curtail them once they had started.

    How times have changed.

  4. The all women colleges appear to be about to allow people self identifiying as all woman so for once its a relevant debate.

  5. Identity politics divides people into – err – identities. It’s a divide and rule thing. And mostly about control. Some or all identities will find they are in conflict. Lesbians are too white. Disabled men are too male. Blacks are too something or other. You play this vile game and it will eat you. Leave well alone.

  6. A publicly funded university is more of a public space than a private pub. If the State can decree whether private individuals can allow smoking or not on their private premises, it can decree that the university it is funding cannot deny people the opportunity to speak there based purely on their ideas.

  7. What Patrick said.

    And yes, like MC, I’m opening my biggest bag of popcorn. Let them tear each other to pieces, and we will carry on.

  8. Regardless of your views on gender, Bellos speaking at Cambridge University in no way compromises the welfare of its students.

    And nor did 99% of those speakers the Guardian Left agitated to be shouted down and banned before her, but it didn’t stop them. To complain about this now is very, very cynical.

    “We’ll use violence and intimidation to shut down our enemies!”
    “Wahhh! People are using violence and intimidation to shut us down! Not faiiirrrr!”

  9. So Much For Subtlety

    Black, female, Jewish and lesbian feminist, Bellos is not exactly a preacher of hate.

    I disagree. Such people are the only socially acceptable non-Muslim forms of hate allowed in the United Kingdom.

    Hatred is pretty much all they have in fact.

  10. I’d echo SMFS who has returned from the wilderness

    These people produce nothing but grievance, hatred , pettiness and spite. Indeed if such things could be monetised the UK would be a world leader.

    It is indeed hilarious to see them tear strips off each other but lest we forget that this intolerance is likely to be codified into law forever by the coming Corbynite regime, which we will not be able to remove, so it is a matter for serious concern and a sense of schadenfreude, though understandable is a distraction from the urgent need to tackle this kind of moron head-on

  11. Solid Steve 2: Squirrels of The Patriots

    Progressive politics has seriously lost its way

    It had a way?

    Bellos, who is responsible for establishing Black History Month in Britain

    Normal people call it “Comic Relief”.

    Black, female, Jewish and lesbian feminist…

    Or, as Hitler would’ve called her, Ready Money Round

    …Bellos is not exactly a preacher of hate.

    Unless you’re a white man, in which case you can go die in a fire.

  12. It’s a matter for concern that the people destined to slime their way to the top of politics and every powerful public and private institution are being indoctrinated to be so thin-skinned, intolerant and draconian.
    If the tendency isn’t checked soon (and looking around, those in public life with sufficient backbone to even try it are vanishingly scarce) , it’s easy to see the road ahead leading to authoritarianism and/or revolution.

    Whether we reach that point before we become an Islamic theocracy and all these useful morons are beheaded is another matter.

  13. “Regardless of your views on gender, Bellos speaking at Cambridge University in no way compromises the welfare of its students. ”

    This appears to be incorrect.

    Exposing WrongThink to students these days apparently causes them physical pain, and is something that either should not be allowed to happen, or the perpetrators violently attacked.

    At least that’s what’s happening in the States; it’ll be over here soon, if it’s not already.

  14. The whole driving force of Identty Politics is to fracture groups into smaller and smaller competing entities, and as the issues become more arcane the rhetoric and violence intensifies. These people should be left to tear themselves to pieces. The result is a good laugh and fewer enemies for Normal people.

  15. “Murray Edwards, a single-sex college at Cambridge, has updated its entry policy to include any prospective student “who at the point of application identifies as a woman”. Single-sex colleges exist to redress the imbalance caused by the exclusion of women from universities. A policy based around self-identification is exploitable – a man could…. ”

    Yeah, I really could self-identify as an 18-year-old woman. And then it’s happy days.

  16. I agree with Rob on the 99% of speakers who were banned before Lindale Bells. She is a classic case of “First they came for…” Every time a white speaker or a make speaker was banned, where was her outrage? Where was her boycott of the institution in sympathy and support?

  17. So Much For Subtlety

    Ironman – “She is a classic case of “First they came for…””

    Says the Cry Bully who tried to silence people who dared to mention the Muslim gang rapes in Rotherham.

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