‘This particular rector election cycle has been nothing short of colourful’ says SRC President Ameer Ibrahim, introducing the evening’s proceedings, and he’s not wrong; beginning back in January when we found out no candidates had been nominated, the re-opened nominations saw two globally controversial figures – right-wing pundit and vocal Trump supporter Milo Yiannopoulos, and Canadian psychology professor Jordan Peterson, who came under fire recently for his refusal to use gender-neutral pronouns when referring to students and staff. Other big names include ex-Liberal Democrat MP Vince Cable, prominent human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar, and Lady Cosgrove, the first female senator of the College of Justice, along with anti-ISIS YPG fighter Brace Belden and four recent Glasgow University graduates.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not necessarily represent those of the QMU.
The controversy surrounding the election of a new Rector at the University of Glasgow will not have passed anyone by. Since the list of twelve candidates was released on 3rd March, one outcry has followed another, particularly as the nomination of Milo Yiannopoulos made national and international headlines. In the midst of a great deal of heated rhetoric, it’s unsurprising that many of us are confused. Who are the candidates running for rector, how should we decide who to vote for, and why does it even matter? With hustings due to take place on Thursday evening and polling opening on Monday 20th, this is as good a time as any to take a step back from the unfolding drama in order to really unpack these questions.