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Oxford Students For Life in the news


Listen to Women- Except...

Molly Gurdon

4th December 2017

Feminists try to shout down even female critics of abortion... It’s dishonest to call for society to “listen to women” while shouting down those with different views. Pro-life women represent a variety of backgrounds and experiences. They deserve better than to be censored, insulted and bullied out of jobs. So yes, listen to women—even ones with whom you disagree.

Nicola Woolcock

4th November 2017

The Oxford Students For Life group had organised the event for Wednesday and invited speakers to discuss proposals to legalise abortion in Ireland... Police were called after college porters failed to silence the protesters, who were escorted from the room.

Breda O'Brien

4th November 2017

It is not pleasant to be shouted down and prevented from speaking for 40 minutes, particularly since it happened in what is allegedly one of the best universities in the world, Oxford. I had been invited, along with Lorcan Price BL, by a small society, Oxford Students for Life, (OSFL), to speak about Ireland and abortion.

Felix Pope

3rd November 2017

Demonstrators stopped the start of the OSFL talk for almost an hour through chants and heckling. 

Oxford SU has been accused of attacking students’ freedom of speech after demonstrators disrupted a talk held by controversial group Oxford Students For Life (OSFL) at St John’s
on Wednesday.

Anne Scanlan

2nd November 2017

Life is concerned at reports last night of a prolife talk at Oxford University being disrupted by pro-abortion protesters and police having to be called to restore order.

Dan Hitchens

2nd November 2017

Around 15 students shouted 'at top volume' to disrupt an event on Ireland's abortion referendum. 

The event at St John’s College was organised by a pro-life society, Oxford Students for Life (OSFL), to discuss the forthcoming abortion referendum in Ireland. The speakers were Irish Times columnist Breda O’Brien and Lorcan Price of the Pro-Life Campaign.

Wall Street Journal: Intolerance at Oxford

Nov. 30, 2014 10:48 a.m. ET

A debate on abortion organized by Oxford Students for Life was slated for Tuesday at the university’s Christ Church college, featuring historian Tim Stanley on the pro-life side and Brendan O’Neill, a blogger and occasional contributor to these pages, taking the pro-choice position. You’d think exposing students to contending views presented by prominent thinkers was part of a university’s core function.

Vox: Controversy swirls at Oxford after abortion debate is canceled

Brandon Ambrosino

November 20 2014, 3:20 p.m. ET

  • An abortion debate originally scheduled to take place at Oxford University's Christ Church college has been canceled after university officials expressed concerns over safety.

  • The pro-life group Oxford Students For Life planned to debate the motion "abortion culture hurts us all." Tim Stanley of The Telegraph would have argued in favor and Brendan O'Neill of Spiked against. Criticism of the event grew rapidly because both debaters were men.

The Spectator: The rise of the Stepford students

Brendan O'Neill

November 22 2014

Student unions’ ‘no platform’ policy is expanding to cover pretty much anyone whose views don’t fit prevailing groupthink.


Have you met the Stepford students? They’re everywhere. On campuses across the land. Sitting stony-eyed in lecture halls or surreptitiously policing beer-fuelled banter in the uni bar...

The Spectator: The top students who are too lazy to argue

Isabel Hardman

November 20 2014 12:58

Brendan O’Neill writes this week’s cover piece on his encounters with ‘Stepford Students’ – a censorious mob who try to shut down debates that they don’t like. His comes out this week after some Stepfords managed to shut down a debate about abortion at Christ Church by threatening to disrupt it with ‘instruments’. The college cancelled the debate, between Brendan, who is pro-choice, and Tim Stanley, who is pro-life, because of ‘security and welfare issues’.

Brendan O'Neill

November 20 2014

On Tuesday 18 November, Brendan O’Neill was due to speak at a debate titled ‘This House Believes Britain’s Abortion Culture Hurts Us All’ at Oxford University. But following a furious campaign by intolerant students who wanted the debate banned, it was called off by university officials. Here is the speech O’Neill planned to make.

The first rule of the politics of fear is that if you want to make something sound scarier than it actually is, you add the word ‘culture’ at the end of it.

So if you want people to freak out about knives, you talk about ‘knife culture’. Suddenly, an inanimate object that we all use every day becomes imbued with menace. If a politician were to say, ‘Knives are a normal part of everyday life...

The Tab: Freedom of Speech doesn’t mean you get whatever platform you want

Tim Squirrell

November 20 2014


TIM SQUIRRELL, President of the Cambridge Union, reminds us about what freedom of speech really means

Recently, a student society called Oxford Students for Life had planned to run a debate in Christ’s Church College, Oxford.

The debate was entitled “This House believes that abortion culture harms us all”. After pressure from a number of different groups within the college and the wider university, the college authorities decided not to allow the debate to go ahead in their venue, and OSFL were unable to find an alternative venue who would take them.

Breitbart: The Authoritarian Left is sending women back to the nineteenth century

Virginia Hale

November 20 2014, 3:11 AM

Universities are the marketplace of ideas, or at least they were until the authoritarian left gained the grotesque amount of power it now holds on campuses today, where you can be "No Platformed" for supporting UKIP, for taking the wrong line on transgender women (over ten years ago and despite having apologised profusely several times) and for, well, disagreeing with the far left on any social issue they decide might "cause mental harm".

Aleteia: Student Pressure Shuts Down Oxford Abortion Debate

Greg Daly

November 20, 2014

A university debate on whether the prevalence of abortion in modern Britain is bad for the UK has been cancelled by Oxford University authorities, following threats of disruption from feminist pro-abortion groups. Oxford Students For Life (OSFL) had organized the debate on the motion, “This House Believes Britain’s Abortion Culture Hurts Us All,” to be held in Christ Church College. The event was advertised with the blurb, “Last year in Britain, over 185,000 abortions were carried out. What does this say about our national culture? Is it a sign of equality, or does it suggest we treat human life carelessly?”

The College Fix: University Cancels Abortion Debate After Feminists Complain

Ryan Shinkel

November 20, 2014

Oxford Students for Life’s debate on abortion and its effects on British culture was cancelled this week after student feminists vehemently complained that two heterosexual men don’t have the right to discuss the topic, and threatened to disrupt the event if it took place.

The debate was set for Nov. 17 and was slated to feature two prominent journalists: The Daily Telegraph columnist Tim Stanley defending the pro-life argument, and Spiked Online editor Brendan O’Neill offering the counterargument.


Oxford Student: Abortion Debate Cancelled

Matthew Davies and Adam Dayan

November 20 2014

A scheduled Oxford Students For Life debate on the topic of “This House believes that abortion culture harms us all” was prevented from happening on Tuesday evening following pressure from student activists.

The debate, which was due to be held at the Blue Boar Lecture Theatre in Christ Church, was described on Facebook: “Last year in Britain, over 185,000 abortions were carried out. What does this say about our national culture? Is it a sign of equality, or does it suggest we treat human life carelessly? Joining OSFL to debate the issue are two prominent journalists.” ...

Washington Post: Oxford cancels student-group-organized protest about abortion

Eugene Volokh

November 19 at 11:24 AM

Oxford cancels student-group-organized protest about abortion after the student union “voted to inform College Censors about the mental and physical security issues surrounding the debate.”

Telegraph: Oxford students shut down abortion debate. Free speech is under assault on campus

Tim Stanley

6:00AM GMT 19 Nov 2014

I would’ve thought that the one place in Britain where you could agree to disagree amicably would be Oxford University. But I was wrong. For instance, I’ve discovered that you’re only allowed to debate abortion there if a) you’re a woman and b) you’re all for it. Any other approach to the subject is liable to attract a mob…

The Independent: I helped shut down an abortion debate between two men because my uterus isn't up for their discussion

Niamh McIntyre

Tuesday 18 November 2014

The idea that in a free society absolutely everything should be open to debate has a detrimental effect on marginalised groups.


"Last year in Britain, over 185,000 abortions were carried out. What does this say about our national culture?" This is the opening of the description of an event widely circulated at Oxford University last week.

National Review: Authoritarian Students at Oxford University Get Abortion Debate Canceled

Charles C. W. Cooke

November 18, 2014 1:43 PM

It is worth saying at the outset that those involved were not “provoking criticism,” but were instead attempting to shut down debate. If Charlotte Sykes considers the prospect of listening “to two cisgender men...

New Statesman: Pro-life pressure group asks two men to debate whether "abortion culture hurts us all"

Media Mole

17 NOVEMBER, 2014 - 12:21

So, the above is an actual debate about abortion that is happening, in England, in 2014 - Timothy Stanley and Brendan O'Neill discuss a medical procedure neither of them will ever need, which prevents a life-changing event that will never happen to them. Well done, guys.

Catholic Herald: This is the speech on abortion that an Oxford University mob doesn’t want you to hear

Tim Stanley

Wednesday 19 November 2014

This is the text of a speech that was due to be given at Christ Church college yesterday. The speech was not delivered following protestsby the Oxford University Student Union Women’s Campaign.

The Cambridge Student: All-male abortion debate at Oxford cancelled

Hesham Mashhour and Colm Murphy

Nov 18 2014

A debate organised by a pro-life pressure group at Oxford University, featuring two male speakers, has been cancelled by Christ Church college JCR after criticism from several campaign groups. However, Oxford Students for Life (OSFL), the organisers of the debate, still plan to hold the event.

Huffington Post: Oxford Abortion Debate Cancelled Due To 'Security Concerns' Over Planned Protest

Lucy Sherriff

18/11/2014 12:16 GMT

An abortion debate organised by a pro-life society at Oxford University has been cancelled due to security concerns over a planned protest.

The Oxford Students for Life group posted a plea on its Facebook page asking for help in finding a new venue.

Cherwell: Christ Church JCR pressure college over abortion debate

Henry Shalders

Monday 17th November 2014

A controversial debate on abortion planned to be held at Christ Church by Oxford Students for Life (OSFL) has attracted widespread student criticism, with the College's JCR voting to inform college Censors about the mental and physical security issues surrounding the debate.

Buzzfeed: Oxford Abortion Debate Between Two Male Journalists Cancelled Due To “Security Concerns”

Alan White

Nov. 18, 2014, at 4:45 p.m.

Barrister: Freedom of Speech and Oxford University Students

Neil Addison


Back in 2012 I wrote a blog about Students at University College London trying to dictate how the subject of Abortion should be handled in University debates and trying in effect to prevent pro-life groups having any platform.he intimidation and disruption they planned...

National Right to Life News: Oxford calls off abortion debate, cites “security concerns”

Dave Andrusko

November 18, 2014

Mark Twain once said, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.”

Earlier today, we re-posted a terrific story by Maaike Rosendal, “The True Face of the Movement: Pro-Choice is No Choice.”

us of a certain age (old) remember of the 1970s and 1980s.

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