Boris Johnson joins backlash in opposition to Oxford college students who voted to take away Queen’s portrait


Boris Johnson right this moment joined the backlash in opposition to Oxford college students who voted to take away a portrait of the Queen from Magdalen Faculty after Gavin Williamson branded the transfer ‘absurd. 

Members of Magdalen Faculty Center Frequent Room (MCR), which is made up of graduate college students, overwhelmingly voted to take away the photographic print after describing the monarch as a ‘image of current colonial historical past’ who may make some folks really feel unwelcome. 

Mr Williamson, the Schooling Secretary criticised the transfer final night time, and right this moment a Quantity 10 spokesman responded: ‘You’ve had the Schooling Secretary’s phrases, which the PM helps.’

In the meantime, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick referred to as the row ‘scholar union politics’, however stated he’s ‘proud’ to have a portrait of the Queen in his workplace. 

Boris Johnson’s (seen right this moment) spokesman stated that he supported Schooling Secretary Gavin Williamson’s criticism of the Oxford college students 

Members of the Middle Common Room at Magdalen College - which is made up of graduates - overwhelmingly backed the removal of a portrait of the Queen

Members of the Center Frequent Room at Magdalen Faculty – which is made up of graduates – overwhelmingly backed the elimination of a portrait of the Queen

He informed BBC Breakfast right this moment: ‘I am an enormous fan and supporter of Her Majesty the Queen, I feel we’re extremely fortunate to stay in a rustic with a head of state of her stature.

‘I would not need anybody to disrespect her out of ignorance on this method, however I do not suppose that we should always waste an excessive amount of time on scholar union politics.’

Yesterday night, Mr Williamson tweeted: ‘Oxford College college students eradicating an image of the Queen is just absurd.

‘She is the Head of State and a logo of what’s finest in regards to the UK. Throughout her lengthy reign she has labored tirelessly to advertise British values of tolerance, inclusivity and respect around the globe.’

Political web site Guido Fawkes reported that the movement to take away the portrait was launched to make members ‘really feel welcome’, with one scholar stated to have commented ‘patriotism and colonialism should not actually separable’.

The MCR president is Matthew Katzman, a lecturer in pc science and the son of a high lawyer at worldwide agency Steptoe & Johnson. His household stay in a £4million mansion in Washington DC, the place he attended $48,000-a-year Sidwell Pals College, a historic Quaker non-public school. 

Right now barrister Dinah Rose, president of Magdalen, stated employees had obtained ‘threatening messages’ over the controversy, as she defended college students’ proper to ‘free speech and political debate’.

She tweeted: ‘So in case you are one of many folks at the moment sending obscene and threatening messages to the school employees, you would possibly contemplate pausing, and asking your self whether or not that’s actually one of the simplest ways to point out your respect for the Queen.

‘Or whether or not she’d be extra more likely to help the traditions of free debate and democratic decision-making that we’re retaining alive at Magdalen.’

Yesterday evening, Mr Williamson tweeted: 'Oxford University students removing a picture of the Queen is simply absurd'

Yesterday night, Mr Williamson tweeted: ‘Oxford College college students eradicating an image of the Queen is just absurd’

Meanwhile, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick called the row 'student union politics', but said he is 'proud' to have a portrait of the Queen in his office

In the meantime, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick referred to as the row ‘scholar union politics’, however stated he’s ‘proud’ to have a portrait of the Queen in his workplace

In a sequence of tweets, she emphasised that the scholars should not consultant of the school, however added: ‘Magdalen strongly helps free speech and political debate, and the MCR’S proper to autonomy.

‘Perhaps they will vote to place it up once more, possibly they will not. In the meantime, the photograph can be safely saved.’

She concluded that being a scholar is about ‘exploring and debating concepts’ and infrequently about ‘scary the older era’, including: ‘Appears like that is not so arduous to do as of late.’ 

On its web site, Magdalen Faculty Center Frequent Room describes itself as ‘one of many greatest graduate communities of the standard Oxford faculties’.

It says: ‘Our graduates come from many alternative international locations all through the world, and have numerous pursuits, tutorial and in any other case.

‘The MCR types an integral a part of the Magdalen graduate expertise – not solely will we organise social and cultural occasions for college students in order that we will make the utmost out of our time in Oxford, however we additionally present a community of help for graduate life in representing the issues of scholars to the school.’ 

Mr Williamson has since confronted criticism from the College and Faculty Union (UCU), which stated the feedback had been a ‘distraction from the disastrous, systemic failings this Authorities has presided over in greater training’.

Matthew Katzman (pictured), tables all motions as part of his position as President of the Middle Common Room (MCR) at Magdalen College, Oxford

Matthew Katzman (pictured), tables all motions as a part of his place as President of the Center Frequent Room (MCR) at Magdalen Faculty, Oxford 

Basic secretary Jo Grady stated: ‘Williamson types himself as a champion of free speech and tutorial freedom, however by no means misses a possibility to assault employees and college students who’re merely exercising these rights.

‘As college employees have already identified, this Authorities does not care about freedom of speech on campus, and its makes an attempt to alter the legislation needs to be seen as nothing apart from a Malicious program for policing what college students and employees can and can’t do.’

Mr Katzman informed MailOnline final night time: ‘The Magdalen Faculty MCR yesterday [Monday] voted to take away a cheap print of the queen that was hung within the widespread room a couple of years in the past (a movement I introduced ahead in my function as MCR President as I do all motions raised in a sub-committee). 

‘It’s being saved securely and can stay within the MCR’s artwork assortment. 

‘The motion was taken after a dialogue of the aim of such an area, and it was determined that the room needs to be a welcoming, impartial place for all members no matter background, demographic, or views. 

‘The Royal Household is on show in lots of areas of the school, and it was finally agreed that it was an pointless addition to the widespread room. 

‘The views of the MCR don’t replicate the views of Magdalen Faculty, and the aesthetic choices made by the voting members of its committee don’t equate to an announcement on the Queen. 

‘Certainly, no stance was taken on the Queen or the Royal Household – the conclusion was merely that there have been higher locations for this print to be hung.’  

The Queen walking through the cloisters at Magdalen College alongside college president David Clary during a visit on November 27, 2008

The Queen strolling by the cloisters at Magdalen Faculty alongside school president David Clary throughout a go to on November 27, 2008



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