In October, a resolution was brought before the National (sic) Union of Students seeking to condemn ISIS and offering support to the Peshmerga Kurdish fighters in eastern Turkey facing them down. What could possibly be less controversial? After all, everyone condemns ISIS, don’t they?
Well not the NUS, who rejected the proposal. Leading the defence of the indefensible was Black Students’ Officer Malia Bouattia who successfully argued that opposing Islamo-fascism, “forced marriages”, the destruction of churches, summary executions, forced conversions and mass rape constituted “blatant Islamophobia” and was to “pander to Western imperialistic intervention or the demonization of Muslim peoples”. Ms Bouattia had seemingly noticed neither that the Kurds are overwhelmingly Muslim themselves nor indeed that by identifying ISIS as “demonized Muslims” she had unwittingly conceded ISIS’ authentic Islamic identity, contrary to the mainstream Islamic apologists’ position, which is to disown the group.
As a proud Islamophobe myself (by Ms Bouttia’s definition) such sentiments struck me as repellent lunacy, but not at all surprising. Sadly this is precisely the sort of incoherent intellectual cretinism we have come to expect from student politics in general and the NUS in particular. I don’t envision for a nanosecond that would be Caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi would have cowered in his halal lair had the vote gone the other way. I imagine that for a man who probably spends half his life dodging aerial drones and CIA death squads, the ramblings of infidel trainee Marxists a continent and a half away would register on his threat radar to about the same extent that a Beijing air-quality inspector might be bothered by a vegetarian’s fart. What is illustrated by this sorry tale is that student politicians have almost no power, so in the complete absence of the possibility of action on anything they feel compelled to have an opinion on everything.
Ireland’s greatest ever literary wit Oscar Wilde unknowingly summed up the affectation when he remarked that fox hunting was “the unspeakable in pursuit of the uneatable”. It’s not merely the lobotomized inanity of pinko gesture politics that’s so repugnant, it’s that the unalloyed pointless fatuity of it all only serves to compound the error. Of course being both a Catholic and a homosexual had good old Oscar been around today he would have been at the front of the queue for a beheading courtesy of a blood-rusted ISIS scimitar. In similar vein, England’s greatest ever literary wit and Wilde’s co-religionist contemporary G.K. Chesterton noted famously that, “Men do not differ much about what things they will call evils; they differ enormously about what evils they will call excusable.”
By means of illustration of the hypocrisy of it all, the very same NUS meeting which failed to condemn the most violently bigoted organization of our time did manage to denounce those truly evil maniacs in UKIP. Now I dislike Nigel I-hate-England-being-run-from-Brussels-but-love-Scotland-being-run-from-London Farage as much as the next man, but I can rest easy in my bed at night knowing that at least he won’t have his minions butcher me for enjoying the occasional pint. This same NUS which finds democratically elected pinstriped former bankers more threatening than pseudo-divinely appointed turban sporting extremists is also the organization which enjoys little more than sticking the (jack)boot into the state of Israel, condemning every military action and policy, even to the extent of refusing to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Something, incidentally which the “ethnic minority” officers wouldn’t dream of ever describing as anti-Semitic. Like Farage, I have my reservations about the Jerusalem regime as well, but I do wonder if only Jihadi John had posted Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” to his YouTube channel rather than his decapitation of a Jew, then perhaps we could have counted on the NUS thought police to have come down on him like a ton of Korans. Perhaps the NUS should make a bit more fuss over actual rapists, rather than sexist posturing over supposed “rape-culture”.
The NUS and those organizations like our own SRC who often emulate it, represent the worst of politics. They represent next to none of us, because we recognize that they have next to no power. In the absence of anything worthwhile to do they badger the rest of us with their pet projects and their minority obsessions. The very act of reproaching them irritates me, as I fear that in itself grants them a credibility and significance they don’t merit. I resent even writing this article about them, and the squandering of calories and electrons spent on their denunciation. We’re best to ignore the lot of them, and refuse to dignify them with our votes or attention.