End ego politics

May 24, 2002

Recently I saw a poster advertising a protest against Israel by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign. Among the organisations calling for this protest was Natfhe, and among the speakers was Paul Mackney, our union's general secretary.

This is my union - but no one asked me if I wanted to put its name to this campaign. Natfhe has to ask whether it is a student union or a real union. If the former, it can engage in posturing ego politics, in which world affairs are wallowed in by jejune politicos playing at matters they don't have to take responsibility for. But Natfhe is a real union and deals with matters of real importance: our employment rights, the underfunding of higher education and our absurdly low salaries.

I call on Natfhe to refrain from sponsoring this organisation; to disestablish links with this and similar bodies, especially in the complex moral world of Israel and Palestine. If they do not, I will be looking to find another union.

Robert Lockie
Psychology department
University of Luton

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