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Anti-racism campaigner hits out at Trinity College over gig ban

The organiser of an anti-racism gig has said he is “disgusted” that Trinity College Students’ Union will not hold a Love Music, Hate Racism gig on the same day BNP leader Nick Griffin comes to speak at the university.

The LMHR logo
The LMHR logo

THE ORGANISER OF the Love Music, Hate Racism gigs has criticised the Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union for not allowing an anti-racism gig take place the day BNP leader Nick Griffin visits the college.

Kurt Nikolaisen of LMHR said that he contacted the Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) the day after he saw this article in TheJournal.ie about Griffin being invited to speak at the university’s Philosophical Society debate on immigration.

He said he did not hear back from the Ents Officer until a number of days later, and was told that the SU did not want to get involved in the event.

However, he was told that LMHR was welcome to hold a gig on the campus at any time in the future.

He said he was told the Ents Officer, Chris O’Connor, had spoken to the rest of the TCDSU about holding the gig and they came to the decision it should not be held.

Nikolaisen said he emailed him back saying it was unfair to let students invite Griffin, who is known for his far-right opinions on race and immigration, to the college but not allow students to hold a peaceful fun event.

He told TheJournal.ie:

Denying the opportunity to hold a peaceful event is not only sending the wrong message, it is not allowing [students] to channel their frustration into something positive.

Nikkolaisen described it as ”absolutely disgusting to be honest”. ”That is going to anger the students even more now,” he said.

There have been a number of students interested in putting on an event in the past. They have seen from the UK how these things can escalate and of course there’s a lot of musicians asking is this going on and how can they get involved.

He said LMHR would have gotten in touch with all the college societies and asked them to get involved in the event.

It could have been taking three or four bands and putting them on stage, or could have been something huge. Something colourful, something that celebrates multiculturalism and says no to racism.

He accused the SU of “burying their head in the sand”.

However Trinity Ents Officer, Chris O’Connor, told TheJournal.ie that the decision was based on defending the interests of the TCDSU members without discrimination.

The TCDSU Executive does not oppose the participation of Nick Griffin in the upcoming immigration debate organised by the Philosophical Society of Trinity College. We do not condone or agree with the political views expressed by his organisation, or indeed any other political organisation.
We would like to reassert our primary objective set out in Article 1.3 of the TCDSU Constitution to provide for and defend the interests of our members without discrimination based on nationality, age, parentage, race, sex, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, creed or political group, and that this objective is pursued independent of any political, racial or religious ideology.”

Read: Far-right BNP leader Nick Griffin to speak at Trinity Debate>

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