Fuck Off: CDE Activists respond to Union punishment

On Monday, a Cambridge Union investigation fined the ‘Fuck off Willetts’ protesters – here’s how they responded.

cambridge defend education Cambridge protest Cambridge Union Society conrad landin david willetts demonstration fuck off harry shukman Jessica O Driscoll Breen Union investigation

UPDATE 10/4/14:

The Union have released another statement saying Jessica and Conrad will be be ‘suspended from the Cambridge Union Society at 5pm on Saturday, 12th April 2014. This suspension will last until payment of fines owed.

By way of explanation Michael Dunn Goekjian added:

‘Seeing as none of the defences of Paragraph 4 of Chapter L, namely that the action was constitutionally compelled or reasonable in the circumstances, applies in this instance, the memberships of Ms O’Driscoll-Breen and Mr Landin are duly suspended until payment of their fines.’

Under Chapter H, Section 4 the pair have the right to appeal the decision.

However, on Wednesday the pair informed the Union Bursar “we are not going to pay.”

Speaking to The Tab, Jessica remained resilient:

“We are maintaining our position. We’re not going to pay the fine.”

“We don’t have any plans to appeal.”

UPDATE:

A Union press release says that Jessica and Conrad have been placed under ‘further investigation’, for their failure to comply ‘with the President’s previous judgement’ – pay the fine.

“The Cambridge Union Society would like to thank ‘Fuck Off’ for their cheque for ‘Sod All’.

“It is worth noting once again that both Ms O’Driscoll-Breen and Mr Landin have a right to submit evidence to and comment on said investigation, and have the right to appeal the eventual verdict. They have both been informed of the opening of a further investigation.

“On a personal note, the President would like to commend Cambridge Defend Education for their outstanding calligraphy. The ‘cheque’ is now on display in the President’s office.”

CDE's cheque in the President's office

CDE’s cheque in the President’s office

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Earlier this week the Union punished Jessica O’Driscoll-Breen and Conrad Landin for telling Minister of Universities, David Willetts, to “Fuck Off” last month.

Today they responded. 

Jessica, Conrad, and other CDE activists delivered a blank cheque to the Union promising to pay “Sod All” from the “Bank of Moral Bankruptcy”, signed “Fuck Off”.

The Union had penalised the two with a fine of £20 for their “disruptive” protest of silently unfurling a banner at David Willetts’ talk last month, saying they “must be discouraged in the strongest sense”.

Legal tender

Legal tender, made payable from the Bank of Moral Bankruptcy

Union Bursar Bill Bailey refused the cheque, saying “so you want your membership revoked?” before leaving with a parting shot of “I’ve got no interest in you at all”.

Speaking to The Tab, Conrad said “We wanted to make a statement against David Willetts and everything he stands for.

“David Willetts wasn’t prepared to listen to students. The Union perpetuates the illusion that they are open to talking.

“We weren’t disrupting anything, the Union is crushing the free speech of all members.”

Jessica and Conrad delivering bankable money

Jessica and Conrad delivering bankable money

Jessica added “There was no way of opening a reasoned debate with Willetts. We didn’t stop anyone from attending the talk. The Union is suppressing all sort of dissent.”

When asked about the fines they’ve been told to pay, Conrad said “they must be desperate for cash. The collaboration with Deloitte obviously hasn’t delivered.”

Incoming Union President Michael Dunn-Goekjian stayed in the office while the Jessica and Conrad delivered their cheque.

After they left, Michael said “the sole outcome of this protest was to be disruptive.

“Language classes in the Union building going on in the building at the time were bothered. This would appear to be antithetical to CDE’s aim of defending education when they’re disrupting school kids’ classes.

“Failure to comply with the presidential investigation carries additional penalties under Chapter L, Paragraph 1a (disruption of events is an offence against the society) at our discretion to impose. An investigation is underway.”

Laughing all the way to the bank

Laughing all the way to the bank

When asked if Jessica and Conrad are still welcome at the Union, Michael responded “only if they comply with the presidential investigation. They’re still members of the society and entitled to the benefits that brings with it.”