The University of Sussex has been slammed for suppressing right-wing points of view after hosting a seminar teaching students how to “deal with right-wing attitudes in the classroom”.
Critics claim the seminar, organised by a leading professor at the University, reveals ingrained political biases in British education.
However, representatives of the National Union of Students (NUS) mocked the claims, suggesting those referred to government anti-terror programs were the real persecuted group on campuses.
“Boohoo, a right winger feels marginalised. Meanwhile, activists are served with injunctions and referred to Prevent”, wrote Shelly Asquith, NUS Vice President of Welfare, on Twitter.
Several universities have disaffiliated from the NUS – which claims to represent millions of students in the UK – after they elected a radical left wing president who has been found guilty of anti-Semitism in an internal report.
Dan Hough, a politics professor at Sussex, posted a picture of a poster for the event on Twitter, captioned: “Perhaps we should just talk about, analyse and then evaluate all positions in any given debate, no?”
Perhaps, erm, we should just talk about, analyse and then evaluate all positions in any given debate, no?! pic.twitter.com/5ueNDhUBOU
— Dan Hough (@TheDanHough) February 10, 2017
Professor Alan Smithers, head of the center for education and employment at Buckingham University, told The Telegraph it is “alarming” that such workshops were taking place.
“The university is letting its prejudices show if it is conflating right-wing opinions with homophobia and racial prejudice,” he said.
“It is very sad the way universities are going. Within universities there has always been a spectrum of views and one of the pleasures of universities is having them rub against each other.
“That is what university is about – enabling its students to think widely and critically and come to their own views crucially backed by evidence.”
Harry Howard, a third-year History and Politics student, said he was “shocked and angry” to see the poster on display in the Politics Faculty.
He said there is a “worrying aversion” to right wing opinions at the university, adding, “universities should be intellectually diverse, rather than echo chambers of left wing opinion”.