Students have been getting an increased number of headlines in the last few months though it appears that the once partisan voices that we might have been used to have been replaced with a new student voice. In today’s (yesterday’s) The Independent, writer Yasmin Alibhai-Brown argues that ‘too many students at our universities and colleges are censorious and absurdly touchy,’ citing recent cases such as Maryam Namazie and Germaine Greer as examples of visiting voices that students have either successfully or unsuccessfully gagged, through campus-bans.
Alibhai-Brown says she used to be part of this faction, though she has learned later in life that allowing a platform for controversial voices can result in them bringing about their own downfall; I suppose many a political career bears this theory out. Her conclusion - 'illiberal students are simply reflecting the illiberal society they and we now live in’ - struck me as rather sad. What would 'Rick’ have thought of this strange social turn where students are not able to listen to a full range of views and work out where there political and social boundaries lie?