I always think of Jenny’s boyfriend in Forrest Gump when running into young men like Conall.
Conall Mc Callig | #RipOffNUIG @ConallEducationWe have created the following motion (co-signed by 18 students) to bring to the upcoming NUIG SU Council. Please contact your Class Rep and urge them to vote for it, it's vital that we fight against fascism, far-right extremism and all forms of discrimination! Spread the word! https://t.co/F7JYZlLROm https://t.co/e66q3T0ovS
I asked Irish feminist Erica White to explain what’s going on.
The Students Union at National University of Ireland in Galway (NUIG) is currently considering a proposal to ban a list of “discriminatory” and “far right” groups. Their list includes Irish women’s groups and the LGB Alliance Ireland.
In an Orwellian feat of engineering, there is provision in the motion for other groups to be added at a later date. Boldly, they have omitted to include any criteria as to how or why groups and individuals will be selected for bans.
This motion would ban all of the listed organisations from the campus. It would ban “any other groups or individuals who espouse conspiracy theorist, far right extremist or discriminatory views.” It would ban Students Union Officers from sharing a platform with members of the listed organisations. It gives carte blanche to the union to ban any and all individuals and groups who fail to meet an ill-defined purity test.
The implications go beyond the campus.
The student activists involved are hoping to get the motion to pass in NUIG, and then take it to the National Union of Students in Ireland. This would result in all of these organisations being banned from campuses across Ireland.
The US has seen this sort of toxic, misogynistic and homphobic activism spread l to flourish among campuses. Researchers have been effectively banned from researching topics like detransition and alternative ways to treat, and live with, dysphoria. Researchers have been fired for the sin of suggesting that gender ideology is problematic. No platforming happens with alarming regularity. Campuses have become a battle ground.
This needs to be nipped in the bud, in Galway, before it gains national momentum.
What can you do to help
Saoirse, at the moment, feels like a lone voice opposing this. She is under fire in her union.
Please show your support to her, and make as much noise about it as you can.
You can tweet about it, you can show your support on her twitter.
You can write to the president of the union, the members of the union, to university staff, and let them know what’s going on.
If you are a student or staff member, you can DM Saoirse at her twitter @SaoirseConn1 and she can point you in the right direction.
Even if you can’t be open about it, please do just let her know you support her.
Here are the details of the students union officials, if you want to drop them a line.