UK LGBT students dump gay men because they aren’t oppressed enough


UK LGBT students dump gay men because they aren not oppressed enoughIn an extraordinary move, the LGBT wing of the UK’s national student union has voted to no longer specifically represent gay men.

The NUS (National Union of Students) LGBT+ Campaign made the decision at its annual conference last week.

The delegates approved a motion calling on university LGBT groups to drop dedicated representatives for gay men because they “do not face oppression as gay men within the LGBT+ community and do not need a reserved place on society committees.”

LGBT students’ societies at UK universities traditionally have representatives for each of the various sectors of the community.

According to the motion, misogyny, transphobia, racism and biphobia are “unfortunately more likely to occur when the society is dominated by white cis gay men.”

The delegates stated that “the reps system exists to ensure that societies committees can always have a reserved place for groups which disproportionately face oppression within the LGBT+ community” and thus gay men should not qualify.

They agreed to “encourage LGBT+ Societies that have a gay men’s rep to drop the position.”

The controversial motion was passed despite statistics presented at the conference showing that 40% of gay men had faced sexual violence and that they are “disproportionately affected by HIV” because of social stigma.

The NUS LGBT+ Campaign further endorsed the policy of “no platforming” in which students refuse to share a platform with “known oppressors” and pressure organisers of events to block speakers who are deemed “unacceptable”.

The strategy, which critics claim is an attack on free speech and expression on campus, was recently thrown into the spotlight when Fran Cowling, the NUS LGBT Officer, refused to speak at a university event unless veteran LGBT activist Peter Tatchell was disinvited.

Tatchell, who has been at the forefront of LGBT rights in the UK for five decades, was called “racist” and a “transphobe” by Cowling.

Tatchell dismissed the accusations and said the incident was an example of “a witch-hunting, accusatory atmosphere” that threatens “open debate on some university campuses”.

He added: “I’m prepared to share a platform with people I profoundly disagree with, precisely in order to challenge and expose them.”

The students, however, insist that “free speech does not exist in a vacuum” and that even academic discussions on concepts such as “no platforming” and “safe spaces” should be banned on campus.

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