Secular liberals and Islamists swap views

There’s a very good conversation going on the Facebook page for the event Protest Against Universities UK! No to gender apartheid! It’s a conversation between secular liberals and Islamists.

In any case you should know about the event if you’re going to be in or near London on December 10.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Time 5:00pm in UTC
On the occasion of the International Human Rights Day we oppose the legitimisation of forced gender segregation by Universities UK, the body representing the leadership of UK universities.

Universities UK has issued a guidance on external speakers saying that the segregation of the sexes at universities is not discriminatory as long as “both men and women are being treated equally, as they are both being segregated in the same way.” Outrageously, the document has been supported by the National Union of Students.

We will meet at 5pm to start the protest at 5.30pm.

A list of speakers to follow soon!

Read the call to action here.

A detailed analysis of the document can be found here.

This post by Chris Moos, in particular, has a lot of back and forth.

I have some valuable new friends now thanks to that page.


  1. Shatterface says

    I don’t think it’s enough to oppose segregation – people should be opposing the invitation of speakers who make demands like that whether the university concedes to those demands or not.

    The right to free speech doesn’t guarantee an invitation to every public forum.

    Universities should be demanding an explanation of why these fuckers have been invited in the first place.

  2. rq says

    I like that point, Shatterface. If someone can’t comply with the university’s policy of non-segregation, why should they be invited to speak? Student groups should be made aware of this fact. I’m sure there are other venues off-campus where these people could speak, if there really is someone who needs to hear them.

  3. Shatterface says

    I’m sure there are other venues off-campus where these people could speak, if there really is someone who needs to hear them.

    Quite. I mean there are mosques, churches and temples for religious people to spout their bollocks – I’m not aware that any invite secular speakers or conceed to their ‘demands’

  4. doublereed says

    Does the UK have a history of segregation? Do they have a precedent against “separate but equal”?

  5. doublereed says

    I ask mostly because they may not be generally familiar with the arguments, so having the discussion is a very good thing.

  6. says

    They do in a way, in the sense that Catholics and/or the Irish were subject to systematic discrimination. But they definitely don’t have the case law of separate but equal, and many are clearly not familiar with the arguments, and yes, I agree, having the discussion is useful.

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