A Knight’s Tale: Professor Suspended for Hanging Bankers Comment

thumb_chris_in_delmenhorstIn yet another example of the shrinking values of free speech in England, a University of East London professor of anthropology Chris Knight has been suspended for saying that bankers need to be aware of the fury in the country before they are found “hanging from lampposts.” Knight was helping organize a protest for next week G20 summit.

Knight said that demonstrators would be “hanging a lot of people” during the protests in London and was promptly suspended by the University of East London. His specific comment was that protesters would be “hanging a lot of people like Fred the Shred (disgraced former RBS chief Fred Goodwin) from lampposts on April Fool’s Day, and I can only say let’s hope they are just effigies. . . To be honest, if he (Goodwin) winds us up any more I’m afraid there will be real bankers hanging from lampposts and let’s hope that that doesn’t actually have to happen.”

We have seen a shocking rollback on free speech in the UK in the last few years. This suspension is even more worrisome because it also raises the free speech rights of academics vis-a-vis universities. Perhaps such a comment is viewed as incautious and worthy of criticism, but Professor Knight qualified the remarks and made clear that he was not advocating lynching. Moreover, he was expressing the views of many. The growing rage around the world is palpable.

The university simply got this one wrong and should stand for free speech and withdraw the suspension immediately.

For the full story, click here.

11 thoughts on “A Knight’s Tale: Professor Suspended for Hanging Bankers Comment”

  1. Guess they don’t read Jefferson in England:

    “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.”

    -Thomas Jefferson

  2. Well, let’s hope this is the snowball that rolls across the pond:

    An unprecedented police inquiry into the role of British spies in the torture of terror suspects was ordered last night by Baroness Scotland, the Attorney General.

    She said the probe into whether MI5 agents knew Binyam Mohamed was abused in secret prisons abroad was the ‘appropriate course of action’ because of the ‘seriousness and sensitivity’ of the ex-Guantanamo detainee’s allegations.

    Last night the inquiry threatened to embroil Tony Blair in another criminal inquiry after Mohamed’s lawyer raised the prospect of detectives being pressed to interview the former Prime Minister.


  3. Professor Turley was referring to President Obama with this quote:

    “I took an oath to God to enforce the law, and you know what fella, you’re going to be a target of an *investigation* and maybe you’re not guilty, maybe you are, but it’s not for me to decide, it’s for a special prosecutor.”

    Perhaps puppy et al, you should not watch grownup shows like Ms. Maddow’s if you cannot read and comprehend beyond the second grade level.

    By the way pup, I am a conservative Republican who is one of the most vehement critics of Bush/Cheney.

  4. The Von Trolls are out in force. The fact that Bush and Cheney have both admitted to authorizing waterboarding is all the evidence you need of their guilt. Waterboarding is a crime under US law and international law so in essence, Bush and Cheney have admitted that they committed crimes. I do think the troll problem is getting a little out of hand.

  5. BIL,
    Thank you for your service. Your replies are always a pleasure to read.
    Lol, when I grow up… you know the rest. And no I’m not selling myself short, but I maybe long some in the money puts. Thanks Brother 🙂

  6. Torture is a crime. Putting criminals on trial is not a show trial, but the pursuit of justice. Torture and treason must and will be punished whether you like it or not. McCarthyism was a fine example of show trials. But unlike Bush and Cheney, those being prosecuted under McCarthy had committed no crime. Indeed, they were using their Constitutional rights to advocate different methodologies and associate with like minded people. Their only crime was believing in a system of governance unpopular with those in power. You know, just like We the People don’t truck with fascism as espoused by the Neocons. Your boys are just outright criminals.

    You spammers don’t yet realize that Bush Co. will be held accountable one way or the other. You’d better hope it’s by a trial too because the other methods of payment are ugly, but they will be coming absent trials. Trials which will result in convictions by the way, not because it’s predetermined, but because of OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE. Thanks for the opportunity your off topic spam presented to remind every one reading this blog that there are other issues that need to be addressed that are equally and possibly more important than the economy – like protecting the integrity of the Constitution and seeing those who attempted to overthrow our Constitution are punished to the full extent of the law.

  7. Shucks, I always thought people were innocent until proven guilty in America.

    Thanks for opening my eyes up “Mr.” turley!

  8. Well Buddha, we are getting very close to England. I am a safe driver with only 1 ticket in 46 years of driving, but I am opposed to this type of surveillance.


    “Get the Feeling You’re Being Watched? If You’re Driving, You Just Might Be”

    Cameras to Catch Speeders and Scofflaws Are Spreading — And Sparking Road Rage

    The village of Schaumburg, Ill., installed a camera at Woodfield Mall last November to film cars that were running red lights, then used the footage to issue citations. Results were astonishing. The town issued $1 million in fines in just three months.

    “We’re putting law enforcement in the hands of third parties,” says Ryan Denke, a Peoria, Ariz., electrical engineer who has started a Web site, Photoradarscam.com, to protest the state’s speed cameras. Mr. Denke says he hasn’t received a ticket via the cameras.”

  9. No one wants to hear a cautionary tale when they are the objects of said tale.




    The thieves in banking and finance will get what’s coming to them because they brought it on themselves. No more, no less. Bad actions have bad consequences. The Professor wasn’t threatening the erstwhile criminals. He was merely pointing out the risks in their behavior. He was engaged in risk assessment, a part of risk management. How is it fair that he is suspended while those asshats from AIG-FP, now AIU-FP – ostensibly risk managers – why are they still employed? Hm? He didn’t encourage people to go hang them, only pointed out it’s what they deserve and may get if they keep acting the way they have been.

    Yeah. The Mussolini treatment sounds just about right for those venal scumbags. But the Thought Police don’t like that.

    England – You might as well change your name to Oceania right now. INGSOC is clearly in the house. I’ve never been to England although I’ve wanted to visit Scotland. Thankfully I can still go to Ireland. Because I sure as hell am not going to vacation in the land of CCTV cameras, scraping and bowing to Sharia, and repression of free speech. I used to love England, but in the last 10 years I have come to understand and appreciate both Jefferson’s and Orwell’s loathing of the Empire.

    Enjoy not getting my tourism dollars.

  10. Holy Fawltey Towers Batman! This is officialdom out of control. The famous British humor doesn’t apply to brain dead economy sucking wealth stealing zombie asshole bankers? Did these people learn nothing from the seller of Sara Palin’s effigy? Effigies command good money on ebay. Nough said!

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