Maryam Namazie 2
Civil Liberties

Warwick University Student Union incites hatred by banning criticism of Islam

 

The timeline:

1. Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists (WASH) applies to have Maryam Namazie – a prominent, intelligent, secularist political activist – speak at the university.

2. Warwick University Student Union responds formally to WASH, rejecting the application on the grounds of inciting hatred:

..after researching both her and her organisation, a number of flags have been raised. We have a duty of care to conduct a risk assessment for each speaker who wishes to come to campus.

There a number of articles written both by the speaker and by others about the speaker that indicate that she is highly inflammatory, and could incite hatred on campus. This is in contravention of our external speaker policy:

The President (or equivalent) of the group organising any event is responsible for the activities that take place within their events.  All speakers will be made aware of their responsibility to abide by the law, the University and the Union’s various policies, including that they:

  • must not incite hatred, violence or call for the breaking of the law
  • are not permitted to encourage, glorify or promote any acts of terrorism including individuals, groups or organisations that support such acts
  • must not spread hatred and intolerance in the community and thus aid in disrupting social and community harmony
  • must seek to avoid insulting other faiths or groups, within a framework of positive debate and challenge
  • are not permitted to raise or gather funds for any external organisation or cause without express permission of the trustees.

In addition to this, there are concerns that if we place conditions on her attendance (such as making it a member only event and having security in attendance, asking for a transcript of what she intends to say, recording the speech) she will refuse to abide by these terms as she did for Trinity College Dublin..

3. WASH appeal the decision (also reported HERE and HERE).

4. Maryam Namazie is notified of Student Union decision to veto her invitation.

5. Two weeks of silence ensues, as Warwick University Student Union fails to respond to WASH’s appeal.

6. The incident becomes public via social media all over the internet.

7. The incident becomes public via mainstream media all over the world.

8. Richard Dawkins gets wind, and alerts his 1.25million atheist/secularist/humanist Twitter horde.

9. All hell breaks loose.

10. Warwick University Student Union hastily puts out a press release, deflecting blame and citing the ongoing appeals process which has apparently not come to a ‘final’ decision:

Warwick SU statement on Maryam Namazie speaker request

In reference to the external speaker request the SU has received regarding Maryam Namazie visiting Warwick SU, I feel I must clarify both mine and the SU’s position given the rather premature discussion alive on social media and in the press.

As previously stated, the SU has a process for assessing the risks associated with any external speaker in accordance with our legal responsibilities. Our policy aims to provide an environment where freedom of expression and speech are protected, balanced with the need to ensure that our community is free from harm and ensure that incitement to hatred is never acceptable.

However, our policy has a number of stages and – whilst risks have indeed been identified – contrary to what has been communicated in the public domain over the last 24 hours, no final decision has been taken. The responsibility for doing so is mine along with authorised senior staff members. To this point, neither I nor authorised senior staff members have had any involvement in the process – the next stage of which is that we review the request, determine what can be put in place to facilitate the event and then discuss this with the event organiser, whose role is integral to the process.

We have a record of facilitating over 200 speakers a year covering a wide range of topics, many of which are controversial in nature. This is part of our role in the development of our members. We do everything in our power to ensure that these events take place, safely and with any identified risks mitigated. Declining speaker requests is an absolute last resort.

I would reiterate that the process for reviewing this particular speaker event has not been completed and, once I and senior staff members have reviewed it, a further statement will be made.

Isaac Leigh
Warwick SU President

Given (2) and (4) above, Isaac Leigh’s assertion that “no final decision has been taken” is quite plainly a lie, as Benjamin David, President of Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists, makes clear (he actually says “unpardonably misleading”, which amounts to the same thing).

And so, once again, we see academic freedom censored essentially on ‘Health & Safety’ grounds: no-one who is critical of Islamism / Islamo-fascism may speak at a British university for fear of their criticising Islam and causing offence (‘hatred’) to Muslims. All must be ‘tolerant’, for that is now the inviolable orthodoxy of ‘British values’. Maryam Namazie explains the theo-political strategy:

The Student Union position is of course nothing new. It is the predominant post-modernist “Left” point of view that conflates Islam, Muslims and Islamists, homogenises the “Muslim community”, thinks believers are one and the same as the religious-Right and sides with the Islamist narrative against its many dissenters.

..This type of politics denies universalism, sees rights as ‘western,’ justifies the suppression of women’s rights, freedoms and equality under the guise of respect for other ‘cultures’ imputing on innumerable people the most reactionary elements of culture and religion, which is that of the religious-Right. In this type of politics, the oppressor is victim, the oppressed are perpetrators of “hatred”, and any criticism is racist.

These sort of Lefties have one set of progressive politics for themselves – they want gay rights, equality for women and the right to criticise the pope and the Christian-Right, and another for us.

We are not worthy of the same rights and freedoms.

We can only make demands within the confines of religion and Islam. If we dissent, if we demand equality, if we demand to live our lives without the labels of “kafir” or “immoral” – and all that which they imply, then we are inciting hatred…

It’s a topsy turvy world when “progressives” who are meant to be on our side take a stand with our oppressors and try to deny us the only tool we have to resist – our freedom of expression.

This is not this first time; nor will it be the last. A few years ago, the London School of Economics effectively introduced a blasphemy law to protect Mohammed from satire.

Whatever happened to freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom of association? This is a university – an English university – in which the unionised student body apparently has no remote understanding of what it is to be educated in the liberal arts tradition, or any appreciation of what it is to live in a liberal democracy. The Student Union has no right to dictate what speakers are invited by affiliated student organisations. WASH should simply ignore the veto and interminable appeal process and proceed with their planned meeting. To bar Maryam Namazie is illegal under s43 the Education (No 2) Act 1986 which guarantees freedom of speech at universities:

(1)   Every individual and body of persons concerned in the government of any establishment to which this section applies shall take such steps as are reasonably practicable to ensure that freedom of speech within the law is secured for members, students and employees of the establishment and for visiting speakers.

And is also illegal under Articles 9, 10, and 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Benjamin David needs the support of all lovers of freedom; and Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists need our prayers.

UPDATE: 7.30am 28 September 2015

It is reported that the Warwick University Student Union has back down / U-turned / caved in to public pressure (or Twitter pressure applied by Brian Cox, Richard Dawkins, Ben Goldacre and Salman Rushdie). The Union has issued a further statement:

Warwick SU to host Maryam Namazie as an External Speaker

In the last few days we have all seen much debate, and considerable concern, expressed about an application to Warwick Students’ Union made by the Warwick Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society, that an SU society host the campaigner and blogger Maryam Namazie as an external speaker.

Warwick SU has a process for assessing any potential risks or legal issues associated with any external speaker, and it is now very clear to us that in this case that process has not been followed. Speaker invitations that may involve such issues are routinely considered by the SU President, who will also take advice from senior SU staff. This did not happen on this occasion. Neither the SU President, nor senior SU staff, were consulted as they should have been. This is a significant error for which there can be no excuse. There is a great deal that we now must put right, and these are the first steps that we are putting into place:

1) The proper process has now been followed, as it should have been in the first place. The application by the Warwick Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society for Warwick Students’ Union to host Maryam Namazie as an external speaker has now been considered and approved.

2) The SU is now seeking to meet promptly with the leadership of the Warwick Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society to make the necessary arrangements for the event to take place in the format they have requested.

3) Warwick SU will issue an unequivocal apology to Maryam Namazie for this egregious and highly regrettable error.

4) Our process as to how we assess requests to host external speakers is very clear. However, it is also equally clear that how this process is communicated and understood by everyone in the SU who needs to be aware of it has failed, and failed badly in this case. We need to act immediately to examine how that happened, and to it put it right, and we will.

We want to assure everyone of Warwick Students’ Union’s continued commitment to free speech. We also want to take this opportunity to apologise to everyone who has expressed concern, or disappointment, or who has been hurt by this significant error and, as we said above, we will be issuing a full and unequivocal apology to Maryam Namazie.

All of which rather corroborates the previous assertion that Warwick University Student Union President Isaac Leigh is either a liar or incompetent (or both). Either way, having brought the Student Union and the name of Warwick University into disrepute, it’s hard to see how he can remain as President. But, personalities aside, it is noteworthy that the bullying / intimidatory / censorious impulse of this Student Union was defeated by Benjamin David’s tenacity, veracity and capacity to court publicity and celebrity. Exemplary culture warring.

  • Dreadnaught

    I congratulate Cranmer on expressing himself on the core issue unbiased by Namasie’s political position and declared atheism. We are living in a country whose mindset has been so warped by the Left that a hospital thought it appropriate to humiliate an injured serviceman in military fatigues in case – IN CASE – it offended someone. They didn’t even have the guts to say Muslims.

    • IanCad

      Double uptick Dred.

      Two thoughts:

      (1) The right to vote should only be granted ten years after full-time education ceases.
      (2) Abolish the H&SE. This vile tyranny has metastasized to encumber our every action as free subjects. It has emasculated us, conformed us, and has convinced the majority that we are not to be responsible for ourselves.

      • Dreadnaught

        Thank you IC. I cant agree with your first comment; just look at Corbyn: privileged upbringing, private education. he may have been to university. He’s over sixty been an MP in a democracy and wants to apply 19thCentury Marxist policies as a credible plan for the future.
        On you second point the H&SE Industry is a self serving Quangocracy but I agree with them on some things, we should not be stuffing little boys up chimneys without goggles and a highviz jacket. 🙂

        • Merchantman

          Think Corbyn went to a Grammar school and the same university of life as Wedgie but with more limited curriculum, having been member for a virtual one party constituency all those interminable years.

  • preacher

    Agreed, All beliefs should be open to discussion & debate,. If the belief is not able to stand up to question & scrutiny, it has no right to special legal protection. Legalised gagging is a denial of the right of free speech, & I’m sure that all the Christians on this site who have battled gamely over the years to defend & share their faith will agree.

    • Politically__Incorrect

      “All beliefs should be open to discussion & debate”

      I am with you totally on that preacher. I would include all secular issues too. Topics like climate change tend to become a closed book that nobody is allowed to question. Shutting down debate means shutting down the mind. It is a shortcut to ignorance. There again, the Left does want us to be ignorant of everything besides its own views.

      Returning to the topic, this is a very clear example of the cowardice of the Left over the issue of Islam, a religion which opposes almost everything the Left stands for, yet they constantly appease it. It makes no sense whatsoever.

      • Merchantman

        Let then, Islam lose its charitable status.

  • Johnny Rottenborough

    The Education Act 1986 guarantees ‘freedom of speech within the law’. The Crown Prosecution Service defines a religious incident as ‘Any incident which is believed to be motivated because of a person’s religion or perceived religion, by the victim or any other person.’ The wording is derived from the definition of racist incident as ‘any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person.’

    A Muslim in Maryam Namazie’s audience believes she is ‘motivated by hostility towards [him] because of [his] membership of a religious group.’ A religious incident has occurred, the law has been broken, and freedom of speech is allowed only within the law. As the state frantically attempts to shore up the multicultural nightmare it has created, expect further restrictions on free speech.

    By the way, Nick Griffin was banned from speaking at Trinity College Dublin in 2011. If all hell broke loose on that occasion, it passed me by.

    • Inspector General

      JR, you are our gift in understanding these rotters. What in your opinion is the lot of female apostates. Does beheading apply, as female beheadings are surely unheard of, or perhaps a lifetime of daily rape awaits…

      • Johnny Rottenborough

        @ IG—For females, the executioner’s sword is replaced by the dematerializing chip pan. This is from The Times of the 12th December 2004:

        “The police and the criminal justice system are just waking up to the realities of life for many Asian women in Britain, who are rigidly controlled by their families and who suffer terrible punishments if they step out of line. According to Commander Andy Baker, the head of Scotland Yard’s homicide unit, there is a problem with ‘chip pan’ fires. ‘We’ve had a number of incidents of young women being badly burnt where there is not a chip pan in sight,’ he said.”

        Not being a subscriber, I can’t verify whether the URL is still valid:

        http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/article401945.ece

        • Inspector General

          Yes, one sees it now. Why fatally damage a piece of useful property. No doubt some Mohamed will lay claim to Maryam Namazie and give her a bloody good hiding at home.

          • Dreadnaught

            She’s an apostate and under sentence of death from the religion of peace

          • Inspector General

            How? We know that Islam hasn’t moved much in 1400 years, so if the prophet did not condemn women apostates to death then, his followers aren’t going to do it now…

          • Hi inspector

            You could also buy the calender .From Wikipedia:

            “After the gesture of the Egyptian blogger Aliaa Magda Elmahdy, who posted nude pictures of herself to provoke the Islamists, Namazie launched a calendar with pictures of naked female activists in February 2012, with among others the Ukrainian Alena Magela of the FEMEN group”.

          • Inspector General

            Greetings Hannah. Not sure the Inspectorate is ready for images of Maryam Namazie and others in the raw, unless it is one of those calendars where the arab women are naked underneath those all enclosing sacks they wear…

          • Merchantman

            That then is her offence. Merely to give her a platform is ‘hateful’.

        • IanCad

          Here’s the story, from The Guardian:

          http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2004/jun/23/ukcrime.religion

          Eleven years ago and this is still going on!

    • IanCad

      JR,

      The definition of a racist incident is defined as follows:

      “any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person.”

      And we are content to let that be??

      “What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly”
      A generation of peace breeds an apathetic, fearful, and tame society.

      • dannybhoy

        Bang on Bro!
        Being ‘trendy’ is more fun than standing for the values your country is built on..
        What I find sad is that so many of our young people seem to be united in defying convention, but terrified of standing alone….for anything.

      • Johnny Rottenborough

        @ Ian Cad—A multicultural society being inherently unstable, it must needs be lashed together with political correctness, which, in turn, produces a society of ‘emasculated liars’:

        ‘Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, nor to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is to co-operate with evil, and in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.’—Theodore Dalrymple

        • IanCad

          Thanks for the copy. Dalrymple nearly always has the right of the matter.

    • DanJ0

      Hold on. What law has been broken?

      Those definitions assume a criminal offence is being investigated and are about looking at the possible motivation with a view to it being treated as an aggravated offence.

      At least as I understand the law anyway.

      • Inspector General

        We live in an age where one of the fundamentals of prosecution is fading by the month, that of Corpus Delicti.

      • Johnny Rottenborough

        @ DanJ0—The CPS guidance on racist and religious crime is here. But it’s all hypothetical. If the event were scheduled to take place, thousands of volatile Muslims would descend on Warwick and force its cancellation.

        • DanJ0

          Thanks for that, though why you think I need the link is unclear.

          What you haven’t done is say what law has been broken when you say: “A religious incident has occurred, the law has been broken, and freedom of speech is allowed only within the law.”

          I think you’ve misunderstood something important but let’s hear what you say first.

          • Johnny Rottenborough

            @ DanJ0—When Paul Weston was arrested in Winchester for quoting Churchill’s opinion of Islam, ‘members of the public’ complained to the police and Weston was ‘further arrested on suspicion of religious or racial harassment’. Hence the scenario I outlined.

          • DanJ0

            So, he was given a dispersal notice presumably because the police believed what he was doing was likely to lead to disorder, and he failed to comply. After speaking with members of the public and with him for 40 minutes, he was arrested on suspicion of harassment under the S4 of the Public Order Act and failure to comply with a S27 dispersal notice. This took place on the Guildhall steps and he was using a megaphone. I’d like to see some footage of what was happening at the time.

          • DanJ0

            That is, an offence hasn’t been committed merely because someone is offended by some words and decides it constitutes a racial or religious incident, as the original post implies. But no doubt the police will turn up to investigate if a complaint is made.

            I think public order law is overused by the police but it has its purpose. I expect Paul Weston knew exactly what he was doing saying those words through a megaphone to the general without reading them out of a book.

            We can publish those words on the Internet, or discuss them in public, or read them using a microphone in a lecture or meeting. We can explicitly agree with those words on national TV without fear of arrest.

            What we need to be clear about is the principles on which the law is based, and the police need to be confident enough to dismiss complaints at the kerbside. That’s where things seem to go wrong. There’s a feeling, an incorrect one, that the police are there to protect against people being offended. People need to be disabused of that.

  • Inspector General

    Before the 2005 muslim bombings of London, your Inspector recalls that the Chief Constable of the Met said that despite his and others best efforts, some atrocity was bound to slip through. Only a short time later, he was proved right.

    So, what’s changed in 10 years. Well, we can be certain that prominent members of the security services are now banned from publically expressing their fears, and one other thing. The H & S people are now in the business of terrorist prevention.

    To lose the Warwick University Student Union executive through a Charlie Hebdo attack would be unfortunate. But the shaking to the core of the government at the time resulting from it would be considered catastrophic.

    So there you have it gentlemen. We must maintain strong government in the face of the Islamification of the UK. Without it, we really will begin to fray at the edges. Nothing is sacred in that aim. Certainly not free speech. Welcome to real politik….

    • Dreadnaught

      Maintain strong government? That would require stong government in the first place

      • Inspector General

        It’s a bit of an oxymoron, that one. It is of course the opinion of the government itself whether it is strong or not. Think you’ll find that the attitude, their attitude, is that they are. Also, terrorist attacks when they start happening with increasing frequency will lead to a strengthening of government anyway.

        • Dreadnaught

          I think a strong commitment to freedom of speech would be an acceptable start; in fact it would be a revolutionary start.

          • Inspector General

            You don’t understand. Freedom of Speech will wreck our fragile peace. The government will distance itself from the concept when the time comes. They will have a good argument. It’s freedom of speech or an increasing body count. They will have washed their hands of the issue. At least If they are clever enough, they will. It will be entirely the students fault, THEY goaded Islam, and THEY paid the price…

          • Dreadnaught

            You old cynic

          • Inspector General

            As it happens, the Inspector is appalled. But he is playing the devil’s advocate here. It will happen. The government will come out of it smelling as best it can under the circumstances…

          • dannybhoy

            If your enemy does not believe in freedom of speech, then why would you support him?
            Where’s freedom of speech practiced on the Islamic world?

          • DanJ0

            We let him speak openly in public and then challenge his arguments so that everyone can form an opinion about the validity of his claims or demands.

          • dannybhoy

            But you miss the point. Freedom of speech is not practiced in the Islamic world, anywhere. No one dare question the history or theology of Islam on pain of death. Many Islamic countries still cut people’s limbs off, or hang them, or teach gays to fly from tall buildings, or oppress or rape women..
            And you’re giving them the right to a platform here that they would never afford Christianity or Judaism….

          • DanJ0

            “And you’re giving them the right to a platform here that they would never afford Christianity or Judaism….”

            Yes. Why should we be afraid to allow people to hear their arguments? That’s what happened here in the past when Christianity had the upper hand and it was wrong. However, what we mustn’t do is gag ourselves at the same time as giving them the platform. Or, more controversially, let them indoctrinate children in state schools.

          • dannybhoy

            That’s how the Nazis took over Germany. They used free speech and once they had achieved legitimacy they used guns and violence to achieve their real goals..
            Violence and the threat of violence to your wife, children and parents are powerful persuaders. Why else do you think ISIL use them to such good effect?

          • DanJ0

            Well, you’ll have to fight people like me as well as them to take away our right to free speech. You’re the real enemy here, if that’s what you think. A fifth columnist, in fact.

          • Inspector General

            No one is taking away your right to free speech, you silly boy. It’s just that it will no longer be sponsored. To wit, it is escaping out the back door and heading for the hills…

          • DanJ0

            The right ought to apply to all of us, or none of us. Take it away from some and the right is not a right any more. What should be argued about is the extent to which it is a qualified right (for all).

          • Inspector General

            Would it help in understanding the last time this country faced a serious threat, people like Mosely found their free speech limited by the walls of their cell…

          • dannybhoy

            I’m sorry but you are assuming that all our people share the same values, and manifestly they don’t. That’s why we’re having to spend billions on resources to foil home grown terrorist plots. That means British people plotting to blow up other British people..
            Or hadn’t you noticed?

          • DanJ0

            “I’m sorry but you are assuming that all our people share the same values, and manifestly they don’t.”

            Tthe right to freedom of speech isn’t merely the freedom to hold the correct opinions.

          • dannybhoy

            Correct opinions has nothing to do with anything Danjo.
            For example, within our own cultural history we could discuss devolution and the Union, we could talk about the English Civil War, the divine right of kings, social reforms, ‘Arold and the ‘arrer at ‘Astings, Whigs and Tories etc etc…
            We wouldn’t have to agree, but native Brits would all know what is being talked about and the underlying values. We might disagree amongst ourselves, but we would also remember how the four nations stuck together through two world wars… That’s our history and what binds us together.
            But what do we have in common with cultures which have no room for freedom of speech, that frown upon equality for women, practice forced marriage, practice female genital mutilation and in whose homelands Shari’a law reigns supreme??
            This lady Maryam Namazie is fighting for more freedoms for Muslim women, and as a result her life is under threat constantly..

            http://www.onelawforall.org.uk/sharia-law-is-madness/

            http://maryamnamazie.com/biography.html
            I agree with what she is trying to do, but the forces ranged against her and the pressure they can bring to bear on our bastions of free speech is very worrying.

          • DanJ0

            When Christianity was in its heyday in England, owning a bible in English was potentially life-threatening, as was promoting or even arguing about the wrong version of Christianity in public, or in the hearing of the wrong people in private. The values of native Brits are rather different now, thank goodness; some of which are specifically encapsulated in articles 9 and 10 of the ECHR, which the State is obliged to follow.

          • dannybhoy

            Well exactly. We have moved on and Christianity is no longer the mediaeval religious authority it once was. The West was once where Islam is now. The difference though is that the secular West has forgotten the values on which its ideas of freedom and equality were based on (Christianity as opposed to the Mediaeval Church), and is assuming that all peoples from all cultures share their secular concepts of tolerance and freedom of lifestyle and expression.
            Those values didn’t just ‘happen’, they came about as a result of positive social changes, often but not always, led by Evangelical Christians.
            They key factor was the belief that man has value, that man was progressing, that man could have a better healthier life.
            All of this had its roots in the Scriptures and classical Greek thought.
            Contrast this with Islam in which the key teaching is submission to the will of god, and a system of laws that one dare not deviate from on pain of punishment or death. (Take a look around the Muslim nations today).
            So why would we want to allow people who believe this stuff to use our freedom of speech to promulgate oppression?
            http://zionica.com/2015/09/25/video-of-islamist-i-want-every-woman-in-this-country-covered-from-head-to-toe/

          • DanJ0

            There’s an irony in your last sentence which is presumably unintended. But anyway. That link is interesting because my immediate reaction is to want to argue against what the Muslim bloke was saying. He’s provided an opportunity there. Far better that we can use him as an example than for him to huddle in private whispering his Islamist message unchallenged. Far better to, I’d say, to remove his religion from State schools so that children of Muslim parents get to encounter diversity of thought and people during the day for 5 days a week.

          • dannybhoy

            Irony as in the preaching of Christianity did you mean?
            (I’m not very good at irony. In fact I’m not very good at subtlety full stop!)
            “Far better that we can use him as an example than for him to huddle in private whispering his Islamist message unchallenged.”
            But you see this is what I think should happen at student union do’s. Have these discussions by all means but have some senior staff representation too, just to observe and hear what is being said. Even a police presence to ensure nothing inflammatory is said.
            The reason being that once these folk establish a presence on campus they can become intimidatory in their methodology and from being an appeal for debate it changes into an opportunity for propaganda.
            I went to a pretty tough boarding school and I can tell you from experience that it only takes a small group of bullies to control a whole dorm..

          • dannybhoy

            Awwwwww, you guessed!

          • Dreadnaught

            The Nazis used violence to suppress dissent at their meetings and their politics. A totally different kettle from the basic principle of freedom of speech. Look how silly the IRA made Thatcher look when she banned them from ‘speaking’ so used actors to read their words.

          • dannybhoy

            Much as I liked Mrs Thatcher she made herself look silly with that piece of theatre..
            I don’t think some here appreciate that we’re not dealing with a debating society where all participants understand the rules and play by them. We are dealing with people who mean us harm. Not all Muslims of course, not probably the majority, but consider….

            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1510866/Poll-reveals-40pc-of-Muslims-want-sharia-law-in-UK.html

          • Dreadnaught

            The trouble with a blanket approach means it leaves the door open to admit people like al-Qaradawi and Abu Hamza even that gob-on-a-stick Chaudry. There is a difference between a platform to debate and a platform to preach pure propaganda designed to incite murder and genocide

          • Inspector General

            Christianity, or as it was in effect at the time, our rulers religion, gave us Magna Carta

          • DanJ0

            Oh come now, this is its 800th anniversary so you ought to know better than that.

          • Inspector General

            Much good came from having Christian rulers over hundreds of years, not that you’d admit to that…

          • Anton

            If they were serious rather than nominal Christians then how come they were always starting wars against each other which brought misery to their peoples?

            Divine right of kings was a pious nonsense pronounced by the winner.

          • Inspector General

            Feudalism was right for the time. Contrary to what the public perceive, the last 1000 years of European history was not a massive unending bloodbath. Wars were declared, and then nothing happened for a long time. Then one or two battles and then nothing again. Eventually the disagreement was resolved. But the start and end dates of the these periods are what are recorded and it does look bad.

          • Anton

            Feudalism was a land grab by the powerful followed by a protection racket on the poor – feed us and we will protect you from other people like us except a hundred miles down the road. However we shall also say that we are the aristocracy and you are ignorant peasants and you are not free to leave our land. And we shall anoint ourselves with concepts such as chivalry, aka pride. All of this is rather different from the distributed land ownership that God enacted in the only place where he gave the laws, ancient Israel in which every family owned their own plot outright.

          • Inspector General

            Oh yes, Anton, totally agree. But for the robber barons who made the rules at the time, it worked. If it worked for them, then it worked for everybody else, as the law of the sword would have it.

          • Anton

            Glad you agree, but please define “worked”?

          • Inspector General

            Let’s say it was pleasant upon their contemplation…

          • Manfarang

            The Pope in fact disapproved of Magna Carta. Innocent III had already sent a string of letters to England berating the barons. Now he explained how, ‘by such violence and fear as might affect the most courageous of men’, they had forced John to accept an agreement ‘illegal, unjust, harmful to royal rights and shameful to the English people’. The Pope declared Magna Carta ‘null, and void of all validity for ever’.

          • Inspector General

            Quite understandable at the time. Kings had temporal rule over their area by divine authority. Popes ruled over Kings spirituality by similar. The pope was hardly going to against that, was he…

          • Anton

            In a Bull of which you can see the original for one more day at the British Library’s Magna Carta exhibition…

          • Merchantman

            In this relativist world we virtually never hear on the public media a criticism of islam, but we need to.
            How quickly Charlie Hebdo is forgotten when its inconvenient.
            Forgetfulness of this kind is what causes civilization to falter and fail in the face of threats. We all know who is the oppressor, in any case; its just in the topsy turvy world of Warwick SU; truth if it isn’t relative, as the lady says, is stood upside down.

          • Dreadnaught

            The maxim ‘give him enough rope’ springs to mind

      • IanCad

        If we were not emasculated we would not be debating this.

    • dannybhoy

      Warwick University comes out in favour of Islam..
      Solution?
      Send in the drones.
      After all, if the turkeys are stoopid enough to vote for Christmas…

      • Inspector General

        No need. We are almost bound to have images of students being laid to rest in the future. That is how Islam destroyed the taint of westernism in the arab world starting in the late 1970s and starting with Iran.

        • dannybhoy

          And you’re right.
          Many of our youngsters are now so ignorant of the true cost of a free and just society, that they value acceptance and conformity to their peers more than sacrifice for an ideal.

  • DanJ0

    I was wondering if this would come up here!

  • Old Blowers

    ” Warwick Atheists, Secularists and Humanists need our prayers.” Indeed they do…Such delicious irony?

    Blowers

  • Royinsouthwest

    There is an organisation that ranks British universities according to how they defend, or infringe, free speech.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/free-speech-university-rankings

    A high proportion of British universities are failing in this respect and we can all guess what kind of opinions they censor

    There are other, better known methods of ranking universities. Some are composite rankings taking into account a range of criteria, e.g. entry standards, student satisfaction, research quality, and graduate prospects. It is a pity that the compilers of such tables don’t extend the criteria to include freedom of speech. Then universities would be given an incentive to defend it.

  • Owl

    “A few years ago, the London School of Economics effectively introduced a blasphemy law to protect Mohammed from satire”
    Quite. And the LSE is also a child of the Fabian Society. A wolf in sheeps’ clothing according to GBS and displayed openly in their library.
    Blair included 200 Fabians in his government and the result we are seeing still today. Luckily for Blair and the FS they found an “heir to Blair” in DC and our society crumbled even further.
    The FS has always been Marxist with it’s own elite to control the plebs.
    No wonder everything is so screwed up.

  • len

    A few years ago, the London School of Economics effectively introduced a blasphemy law to protect themselves from……. reprisals from radical Muslims.

    So much for free speech?.
    As I remarked on another thread secularism is very selective as to whom it allows ‘free speech’ which is not free to all.
    The dumbing down on our youth continues so it seems…..

  • Merchantman

    Ominously I see the Warwick University SU is located on Gibbet Hill Road. Handy for dealing with those who criticize.

  • Inspector General

    A bit off topic but from PN.

    “Gay UKIP MEP claims refugees might stone him to death”

    Some of the comments are a hoot….
    ……………………………………………………………………………….
    Queen EU (Ethol Ugly)-Michael • 4 hours ago –
    Get a grip man. Muslims are not our enemy. Diversity, Inclusion and Equality for all must be the only way forward in a modern world. If you live in fear then explain why but do not use our Muslim friends as a political football.
    ……………………………………………………………………………..
    And watch out for commenter Gulliver and his possibly syphilitic mind trying to make sense of it all…

  • HedgehogFive

    Not long ago, one used to hear of gang leaders in inner London and similar places inflicting damage, often fatal, on people who did not show them proper “respect”.

    Isn’t that the way these Saracens are claiming the right to do?

  • In the press release (quoted in the article, but now deleted from Warwick universities server) Isaac says ‘risks have been identified’ – but a new statement saying the visit will be allowed says:-

    “Speaker invitations that may involve such issues are routinely considered by the SU President, who will also take advice from senior SU staff. This did not happen on this occasion. Neither the SU President, nor senior SU staff, were consulted as they should have been.”

    So Isaac is now denying he ever knew anything about it.

    The lad is clearly a liar – he, and his ‘administration’ must clearly step down from leading their Students Union…

  • Manfarang

    I read reports of a fire at a mosque in Britain.The fact is it is Ahmadiyya, shows the level of ignorance that prevails in today’s Britain.

    • Dreadnaught

      No need to be so hard on yourself Manfang.

      • Manfarang

        Sorry I forgot you know little of the Raj.

        • Dreadnaught

          No you didn’t forget – you’re just wrong again EEE-AWW

          • Manfarang

            I am not. Ahmadiyya is very different from Salafism.

          • Dreadnaught

            What has this to do with the Raj?

          • Manfarang

            Ahmadiyya is an Islamic religious movement founded in British India near the end of the 19th century.Ahmadis view themselves as leading the revival and peaceful propagation of Islam.They believe the founder Ahmad was the Mahdi awaited by Muslims. Most orthodox Muslims have denounced Ahmadis as heretics, and mainstream Islam generally considers them to be non-Muslims.

    • Little Black Censored

      “The fact is it is Ahmadiyya, shows the level of ignorance that prevails in today’s Britain.”
      I can’t understand the point you are making; is it something to do with who might have started the fire?

      • HedgehogFive

        The Ahmadiyyas are a Muslim sect from the 19th century who do not include violent jihad in their portfolio.

        In Pakistan, an Ahmadiyya is, on a statistical basis, twice as likely as a Christian to find him or herself the target of a trumped-up blasphemy charge. Hindus, Shias, etc, are less likely than either, though sufficiently so to make their existence quite uncomfortable.

        • Little Black Censored

          I suppose the violent Muslims would be no more friendly to the Ahmadiyyas here than they are at home…?

  • Dreadnaught

    Warwick Student Union has admitted that it’s procedure regarding external speakers was not followed, and that Maryam Namazie would never be excluded from talking when it was. That is of course unless she is drowned out by the baying disruptives who don’t really believe in freedom of speech unless it is their own.

    http://www.warwicksu.com/news/article/warwicksu/Warwick-SU-to-host-Maryam-Namazie-as-an-External-Speaker/

  • Jon Sorensen

    Richard Dawkins is such an omnipotent hero. If a prayer fails you just need to let Richard know and things get fixed. A victory for free speech.

  • Anton

    This is a falling-out between two sets of atheists, the PC and the Freespeechers.

  • Demon Teddy Bear

    In the 70s the political left devised it’s “no platform” policy to censor opinions that they strongly disagreed with. All this rubbish is a downstream consequence of that illiberal and intolerant attitude.

    I think we need government action. Firstly we need to ban all “no platform” policies, however disguised. If a group of students want to invite even Adolf Hitler or Josef Stalin or Ayatollah Semtex to address them on “the crimes of the Jews”, let them. And no, that doesn’t mean that others have a “right” to disrupt that by means of “protests” or other forms of thuggery.

    The pretext for all this is Islamic state propagandists, trying to recruit for their armies. My own view is that we should let them speak, if invited by students or staff. Is there much practical difference between “inciting hate” and “encouraging people to disagree with something”?

    We cannot have the whole nation in chains, merely to stop people saying stuff. Nor should we try.

    • Dreadnaught

      So someone says – ‘Go forth and decapitate the non-believers’ You’re ok with that are you? They should be able to say that and get away with it?

      • Demon Teddy Bear

        That’s a rather odd comment. Incitement to violence is not what we are talking about.

        • Dreadnaught

          Its very much to the point. Its questioning what you said considering its what is written in the cores of Islam. So anyone reading it to an audience …. freedom of speech, freedom of religion. Join the dots.

          • steroflex

            In parliament, there is complete freedom of speech.
            Universities are places which are there to question.
            If some terrorist got up and appealed for revolution, like Marx did, or sterilization of unapproved people, like the eugenics experts did, I would certainly support their freedom to speak in public.
            They might be right!
            So the answer to your question is this: yes, in universities, I would support that. But I would not support it in a religious setting – like a Church or a Mosque or Temple.

    • Manfarang

      Following the 1970s various religious extremist groups sprung up in the universities with platforms that in someways matched the extreme left.

    • steroflex

      I was actually there when, shortly after the second world war, Oswald Moseley addressed the university debating society – and had a green jelly thrown at him!

  • This is also worth noting:

    “In addition to this, there are concerns that if we place conditions
    on her attendance (such as making it a member only event and having
    security in attendance, asking for a transcript of what she intends to
    say, recording the speech) she will …”

    I realise they’re only students, but (alongside all the things already noted) they don’t appear to have understood that a “concern” about something that might possibly happen as a result of a contingent event, is not valid evidence of anything, and not grounds for taking action, unless you’re in a nannying role.

    When dealing with adults, we’re meant to respond to what they *do*, not what we suspect they might, in contingent circumstances, do – especially if you’re talking about banning them as a ‘result’ of the hypothetical action.

    Students generally lead as they’ve been led, and so I’d tend to see this as reflecting the increasing nannying culture of our leaders. Having abandoned belief in an ultimate Just Ruler, who alone is competent to judge private thoughts and discern the future, they take more and more to themselves.

    • steroflex

      In the olden days, “students” got what the University allowed. There was no “Students’ Union” dictating what we should or should not hear. We were treated with respect in those days.

  • Anton

    Dim or dhimmi?

    • HedgehogFive

      dhummi.

  • IanCad

    Dear Lord Above!!

    Now it appears that the UEA is proscribing sombreros!!

    Isaac Leigh is undoubtedly a class A twerp. It is a job requirement for Student Union cadres. But, but, but! His obvious failings pale into nothing when compared to “He Who Finds Offence In Sombreros.” Namely; one named Chris Jarvis. High Muckety Muck in the University of East Anglia Students Union.

    I’ll say no more. Here is a flavour of the unemployable:

    “Chris has been an organiser of a variety of campaigns for social and environmental justice at UEA including Fossil Free, Defend Education, the Living Wage campaign and Sweatshop Free. Proudly queer, unashamedly vegan, enthusiastically punk, passionately socialist, vibrantly Green, staunchly teetotal, and reluctantly happy.”
    Time to cut the education budget by 50%

    • dannybhoy

      I think we’ve enjoyed freedom for so long we’ve forgotten its cost and even its value. When you consider the expected life span of a ww2 pilot during the Battle of Britain was 6-8 weeks and many of them were real youngsters, you realise how much they loved their country and knew their duty..

  • len

    Islam is proving itself to be anything but ‘the religion of peace’ worldwide as some of our leaders are becoming aware of. Islam lends itself to radical elements and as the Islamic population in the West grows westerners are having to conform to what Islam demands of them.
    It would seem that having pushed Christianity aside Islam is rushing in to fill that void…and Islam stands a good chance of becoming ‘the dominant religion’ of the West…

    This is becoming the grim reality as mosques are appearing in every western city….

    • dannybhoy

      The difference is Len that if Islam were to triumph in the West (which I don’t believe it will) there wouldn’t be any freedom as there is now, to believe or not believe. Everybody would bow the knee to Islam. There are no openly atheistic or agnostic dissenters allowed. They would be underground – in one way or another. :0)
      I don’t think people realise how life would change were Islam to triumph over the West. They assume that life would go on pretty much the same as it does now.

  • MarieP

    As a student at Warwick between ’94 and ’97 I recall that controversial/ unpalatable / out of step speakers – oil companies on milk rounds, misogynist theorists etc. were
    hosted in one of the University buildings that already made a good
    business out of corporate conference bookings. A bit of a fudge maybe but
    it worked. I see that dungarees, DMs and a ‘90’s soundtrack is back. Isaac
    should apply the ‘90’s principle of ‘freedom of speech when it’s speech about
    freedom’, put Maryam in the airport lounge (is it still called that?) and offer
    no mates rates on the booking. The SU is a community and can decide who it wants to extend its hospitality to.