Seriously, what is up with the Glasgow Uni Rector nominations?

Only one woman, a self-confessed ‘bigot’ and a rape sympathiser are among the nominees

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The list of Rector nominees was announced by the University yesterday. Here’s the complete list in case you haven’t seen it:

Amongst more credible nominees – such as Solicitor of the Year Aamer Anwar, previous Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills Sir Vince Cable and the sole woman on the list, Lady Cosgrove, who was the first woman to be a judge in Scotland’s Supreme Courts – two “alt-right” men of more than questionable morals are running for the position.

This is more than just a feminist issue. It’s an ethical one. While being the only woman in this list of twelve is itself a crime against equality, the fact that she has an equal opportunity to win alongside a man who refuses to acknowledge gender neutral pronouns, and one who openly stated that sometimes sexual relationships between adults and children are fine (?!) is on a whole other level of craziness.

To further illustrate how crazy it is this could happen at one of the most diverse and tolerant universities in the UK, here’s a little bit more information about the two controversial candidates.

Milo Yiannopoulos is a British public speaker who used to write for Breitbart News – a website known for posting deliberately misleading stories as well as conspiracy theories. Oh, and he’s an open Trump supporter. If that doesn’t already set alarm bells ringing then perhaps the fact he supposedly condoned statutory rape will.

Yikes. He describes him self as a free speech activist, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that he abuses that right to promote hate speech against feminists, and Islam, as well as many others. So much so that he got banned from Twitter for engaging in targeted abuse.

On the other hand, Jordan Peterson is a Professor at the University of Toronto, as well as a clinical psychologist there. Earlier last year, he released a series of highly controversial, and downright offensive videos about “political correctness”, in which he highlighted his transphobic and misogynistic views. He stated that he was against Canada making gender discrimination a criminal offence, and that he does not believe in gender-neutral pronouns.

How did men like this even get nominated for such a prestigious position at one of the UK’s top unis? How can people who hold these extremist views represent a university that promotes equality and has one of the largest and most diverse student bodies? The plain and simple answer is: they can’t. In a time where politicians such as Farage and Trump hog the limelight with their hateful speeches, we need to prevent their inhumane opinions from spreading further. Having someone like this represent our University would be a massive step down for us and would alienate many of the LGBTQ+ students we have here, amongst others.

Quite shockingly, in a poll of who people are planning to vote for (which you can participate in here), Jordan Peterson and Milo Yiannopoulos come in at third and fourth place respectively. The fact that people would even take their candidacy seriously is scary – these men could do horrible things to this University and its reputation were either of them elected.

Thankfully, there is more you can do than writing an angry Tab article to stop this. There has been so much uproar about the fact these two men were nominated that a petition has started to get them removed from the candidacy. I would highly encourage everyone to sign the petition here, and stop these two disgraceful men from having the opportunity to represent our people and our student voice.