Davies slams senior university lecturer who described Conservative voters as “vermin” and compared them to “white supremacists”
Former Welsh Conservative leader and South Wales Central AM Andrew RT Davies has hit out at the increasingly intolerant culture in UK universities, after a senior lecturer described Conservative voters as “vermin”, “not worthy of respect” and likened them to “white supremacists”.
Dr Andy Williams, a lecturer at Cardiff University School of Journalism, Media and Culture, published the comments on his Twitter account, in response to the Conservative Party’s landslide victory in Thursday’s General Election.
Dr John Jewell, Director of Undergraduate Studies at JOMEC, also got involved in the row, suggesting that nobody “who professes to have a social conscience” could vote Conservative.
Referring to a poll which revealed 48% of men and 62% of those aged 65+ had voted Conservative, Dr Williams claimed British men and baby boomers were “statistically more likely to be vermin than women and the young”.
When challenged on the comments, he insisted he “stood by” his views, adding that “those who support … the human devastation doled out by the Conservative Party are not worthy of respect”.
Responding to a Labour party canvasser who had encountered a negative response from voters in relation to Jeremy Corbyn, he claimed it was “rooted in a kind of boomer Brit white supremacism”.
He also “liked” other tweets from prominent left wing activists which suggested Conservative voters were motivated by white supremacy.
Describing himself as a “staunch defender of free speech”, Mr Davies said academic staff should be free to express their views, but said he had deep concerns about the language used.
He pointed to “an increasingly intolerant atmosphere” on campuses across the UK, where staff and students of centre right views were ostracised and made to feel uncomfortable.
He has written to the university’s vice chancellor, Colin Riordan, demanding action be taken and has requested a meeting to discuss his concerns.
Mr Davies said, “I am a staunch defender of free speech, and Dr Williams’ comments reflect the increasingly intolerant atmosphere in universities where only one point of view is acceptable.
“Almost 44% of all voters voted Conservative on Thursday, and I’d expect better from a senior lecturer than to describe them as vermin and white supremacists.
“I have been contacted by many students and staff at the university who vote Conservative, who claim it is a cold and politically hostile environment.
“It is high time action is taken to ensure all views are tolerated and our universities are a place of debate, not an echo chamber.
“I have written to the vice chancellor and I look forward to his response.”