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MISSION STATEMENT FROM – NUSCAPE

What is NUScape?

For clarity, the NUScape’s sole focus is NUS disaffiliation. We respect individual rights – ‘live and let live’ – and we welcome anyone who supports our vision is for an inclusive tolerant campus environment which is home to traditional freedoms of religion, association and expression.

Our vision is for a new culture that promotes ideals over identities. Our ideals being that of universal human rights and individual liberty. We would like to see an NUS that campaigns for progressive values with a coalition of different identities (such as Atheists, Christians, Muslims and etc.) against intolerant ideas. We are appalled to see intolerant ideas – such as that of anti-Semitism – becoming completely legitimised and apologised for under the moral relativist hangover identity politics provides.

In the spirit of the John Stuart Mill search-for-truth justification, we support organised peaceful debate rather than censorship; challenging rather than shutting down ideas – though naturally caveated by the non-aggression principle and UK law.

NUScape feel that the NUS has had many opportunities to reform, to be more inclusive, but has failed, and therefore, that disaffiliation is required. Take back control of your campus.

What would you like to see reformed?

1) Vision: Ideals Over Identities

We would like to see the removal of identity politics entirely. Our vision is for a new culture that promotes ideals over identities. Our ideals being that of universal human rights and individual liberty. We would like to see an NUS that campaigns for progressive values with a coalition of different identities (such as Atheists, Christians, Muslims and etc.) against intolerant ideas. We are appalled to see intolerant ideas – such as that of anti-Semitism – becoming completely legitimised and apologised for under the moral relativist hangover identity politics provides.

2) Right2Debate Values – “Challenge Bigotry, Not Free Speech”

We support the John Stuart Mill search-for-truth justification for free speech, subject to the non-aggression principle, i.e. corn-dealer illustration. Therefore, we campaign for universities to implement the following alternatives to no-platforming:

a) Debate over censorship – caveated to be only applicable to speakers who do not breach UK law.

b) Debate over uncontested platforms – speakers and organisations that campaign for the removal of an individual/communities legal rights due to their inalienable traits (such as race) or belief in criminalising non-violent intolerant belief must be challenged through civil dialogue and debate.

c) Uniformity – that these principles should be applied to all.

d) Clarity – that policies and mechanisms are made clearly online and to students.

Who do you work with?

NUSCAPE works with Right2Debate. Right2Debate is a Quilliam project that has the support of organisations such as: English Pen, Index on Censorship, Tatchell Foundation & Student Rights. Right2Debate has 3,000 signatures of support and 19 different active university campaigns. Young Liberty is also involved and is a student organisation that campaigns for the values of classical liberalism and free speech.

WE WILL ALSO WANT TO WORK WITH ANYBODY WHO IS FOR DISAFFILIATION CAMPAIGNS. WE ARE ALL CALLING FOR THE IMMEDIATE DISAFFILIATION FOR A UNITED CAUSE.

Why are you different to other campaigns?

Different campaigns call for different things to take place after disaffiliation. NUSCEPTICS for example (in mission statement 3) state: “we also believe that a distinction has to be made between ideas and the rights of the individual. Students should be free to criticise political and religious ideas free from abuse, provided it doesn’t infringe upon the rights of the individual.”

The lack of clarity of what it means to allow free discussion and debate but for it to be stopped if deemed to “infringe upon the rights of the individual” is ambiguous. Be it that I have worked on this issue for 2 years with students and policy makers, I believe it is these ambiguous terms, and terms like “absolute free speech”, “safe space” “duty of care” that lead to the problems we have seen today. If continued to be left unanswered, these questions will either be answered by Regressive or out-of-touch politicians who will rely on the easy answer: censorship.

Therefore we propose that Student Unions take a clear and concise way of dealing with issues pertaining to free speech through Right2Debate values.