Politics

Oxford University Queen row blasted by Andy Burnham – woke culture ‘getting out of hand’

Brendan Chilton says the Oxford students who removed a picture of the Queen are "a bunch of losers"

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Oxford University students have elected to take down a painting of Queen Elizabeth II from a college common room because the monarch allegedly represents “colonialism.” The painting of the Queen was on display in the Middle Common Room of Magdalen College but will now be removed following a vote by students. LBC host Nick Ferrari asked Labour’s Andy Burham for his take on the students’ controversial decision.

The Mayor of Greater Manchester replied: “I can’t really relate to that if I’m honest.

“I think these kinds of gestures are getting out of hand if I am honest Nick.

“I don’t support that.

“We always should respect the Queen especially now given the things that have happened in the last few months.”

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Mr Burham told the LBC host the decision to remove the painting was “divisive”.

He said: “So no I don’t support that, lets get a sense of proportion and a bit of respect back.

“People can aires their views but those kinds of gestures are divisive actually.

“They just divide people and I don’t think they achieve much, to be honest.”

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Meanwhile, the President of Magdalen College Barrister Dinah Rose has defended the students involved, arguing they had a right to “free speech and political debate”.

Ms Rose wrote on Twitter: “Here are some facts about Magdalen College and HM the Queen.

“The Middle Common Room is an organisation of graduate students. They don’t represent the College.

“A few years ago, in about 2013, they bought a print of a photo of the Queen to decorate their common room.

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“They recently voted to take it down. Both of these decisions are their own to take, not the College’s.

“Magdalen strongly supports free speech and political debate, and the MCR’S right to autonomy,” she continued.

“Maybe they’ll vote to put it up again, maybe they won’t. Meanwhile, the photo will be safely stored.

“Being a student is about more than studying. It’s about exploring and debating ideas. It’s sometimes about provoking the older generation. Looks like that isn’t so hard to do these days.”


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