Invasion of the Transphobic Climate Deniers


We’ve discussed here the views of Jordan Peterson (on climate activism, among other things) and I’ve been developing a healthy paranoia about Cambridge University, where professors of history and computery stuff are involved in an international five year plan to get climate scepticism recognised as an official conspiracy theory, alongside invasions of aliens (the outer space ones and the immigrants.) In the Guardian (where else?) the three subjects come together in this article:

Cambridge University has rescinded its offer of a visiting fellowship to Jordan Peterson, the self-styled “professor against political correctness”, after a backlash from faculty and students.

Peterson, a psychology professor from Toronto who has courted controversy for his views on transgender rights, gender and race, announced on Monday via his YouTube channel that he was joining Cambridge for two months.

In October I am going to Cambridge University in the UK for two months and I will be a visiting fellow there at the divinity school and should give me the opportunity to talk to religious experts of all types for a couple of months, as well as students,” he said…

The University of Cambridge said Peterson requested to be a visiting fellow and was initially granted the opportunity, but after further review it decided to take back the offer.

[Cambridge] is an inclusive environment and we expect all our staff and visitors to uphold our principles. There is no place here for anyone who cannot,” a spokesperson for the university said.

There follows a confused (i.e., false) account of his refusal to use transgender pronouns:

In September 2016 he expressed concern on YouTube about the development of a federal amendment to add gender identity and expression to the Canadian Human Rights Act. This would make it illegal to stop someone from getting a job or discriminate against them in the workplace based on the gender they identify with or outwardly express. Peterson claimed the law was an infringement of free speech…

This omits the subject of Peterson’s protest (the legal obligation to use the pronouns of choice) and falselysuggests that Peterson is in favour of discrimination. Likewise, the statement that he has “has courted controversy for his views on transgender rights, gender and race” hints at racism, sexism and transphobia. Then comes the coup de grâce:

In an interview in April 2018, he doubted the science behind climate change: “Most of the global warming posturing is a masquerade for anti-capitalists to have a go at the Western patriarchy. That’s partly why the climate change thing for me is a contentious issue, because you can’t trust the players. You can’t trust the data because there is too much ideology involved.”

The article is rounded off with some tweets from Cambridge academics approving the university’s censorship:

I’m glad to hear it has been rescinded but why was an initial offer ever made in the first place??

The truth is Cambridge just doesn’t have enough sage authoritative white men who believe they know better than everyone else and can tell the world how to run itself. We need to ship them in from outside.

Enraged and disappointed with @Cambridge_Unithat Jordan Peterson has been given a visiting fellowship. Such hatemongering shouldn’t be given a place at our University.

Well my hate has been well and truly mongered. So I’ll shut up before I say something I regret.


  1. Peterson responds on his web page

    They didn’t even have the courtesy to inform him:

    Now the Divinity school has decided that signaling their solidarity with the diversity-inclusivity-equity mob trumps that opportunity–or so I presume. You see, I don’t yet know, because (and this is particularly appalling) I was not formally notified of this decision by any representative of the Divinity school. I heard about the rescinded offer through the grapevine, via a colleague and friend, and gathered what I could about the reasons from social media and press coverage (assuming that CUSU has at least something to do with it).

    Toby Young writes Cambridge’s shameful decision to rescind Jordan Peterson’s visiting fellowship

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Peterson’s article linked by Paul in his comment above pulls no punches:

    I think the Faculty of Divinity made a serious error of judgement in rescinding their offer to me (and I’m speaking about those unnamed persons who made that specific decision). I think they handled publicizing the rescindment in a manner that could hardly have been more narcissistic, self-congratulatory and devious. I believe that the parties in question don’t give a damn about the perilous decline of Christianity, and I presume in any case that they regard that faith, in their propaganda-addled souls, as the ultimate manifestation of the oppressive Western patriarchy, despite their hypothetical allegiance to their own discipline.

    I think that it is no bloody wonder that the faith is declining (and with it, the values of the West, as it fragments) with cowards and mountebanks of the sort who manifested themselves today at the helm. I wish them the continued decline in relevance over the next few decades that they deeply and profoundly and diligently work toward and deserve.

    P.S. I also find it interesting and deeply revealing that I know the names of the people who invited me, both informally and formally, but the names of the people who have disinvited me remain shrouded in exactly the kind of secrecy that might be expected from hidden, conspiratorial, authoritarian and cowardly bureaucrats.

    I wish I’d said that.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. He was invited by the Faculty of Divinity, not by the “student body [politic]”. It’s disgraceful that the Faculty have apparently let themselves be leaned on by these activist snowflakes who seem to think that they represent the University and are therefore entitled to censor visits form academics they disapprove of. What of the teaching staff, within the Divinity Faculty and across the University more generally? Do they agree that Peterson’s visit should have been cancelled because he’s not politically correct enough? If not, by failing to speak up, they are moral cowards.

    I feel quite sorry for him. He was obviously looking forward to the visit. Cambridge University will only slide further down the academic excellence scale if it continues to allow these activist half wit semi-literate snowflake millennials speak on its behalf and decide who is and who is not acceptable as a visiting scholar.


  4. A School of Divinity not really following the example set by St.Paul.


  5. There are lots of other colleges, schools or whatever at the University of Cambridge which could extend an invitation to Professor Peterson. I wonder if one will?

    It’s a funny place, a traditional university like Cambridge. Wittgenstein went there to study engineering, but ended up at Bertrand Russell’s lectures on logic. Then he went back to Austria to fight against us in the Great War, and in the trenches wrote Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, which was an attempted demolition of a large chunk of Russell’s life’s work. On the recommendation of Russell, (who had spent part of the war in prison for pacifism) Cambridge awarded him a lifetime lectureship.

    Or take Joseph Needham, who was a brilliant biochemist, author of a definitive textbook at the age of 26. Communist sympathiser, nudist, morris dancer, and serial philanderer. After an affair with a Chinese student he announced that he was giving up biochemistry to write the definitive history of Chinese science. His Cambridge college gave him lifetime sinecure and he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society, the British Academy and a Companion of Honour (in the personal gift of the Queen.)

    I wonder what the snowflakes or the bureaucrats would have made of them?


  6. Toby Young writes at the Spectator:
    “According to the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s ‘Freedom of Expression’ guide for higher education providers and students’ unions in England and Wales, no speaker has a right to be invited to speak to students on a provider’s premises, but once someone has been invited they should not then be disinvited. It even suggests this may be a breach of Section 43 of the Education (No 2) Act 1986, which places a legal duty on universities to take ‘reasonably practicable’ steps to protect freedom of speech.

    Please, God, let Jordan Peterson sue the University of Cambridge for having invited him to take up a visiting fellowship, only to rescind the invitation after a bunch of snowflake undergraduates said they would scweam and scweam until they made themselves sick. OK, they didn’t actually say that, but they might as well have done, the pathetic, passive-aggressive cry-bullies.”
    My synopsis:

    Liked by 1 person

  7. > There are lots of other colleges, schools or whatever at the University of Cambridge which could extend an invitation to Professor Peterson. I wonder if one will?

    This is quite a plausible outcome I think. Cambridge is not yet entirely over-run by Guardianesque groupthink, and I’m sure there are some free-thinking academics there who are thinking what you’re thinking.

    Alternatively, there is of course nothing to stop Jordan Peterson just turning up in Cambridge and giving his Bible lectures independently. In fact if you look at his “March Q&A” from Monday, at about 6 minutes, after he answers the important question about his favourite soup, he talks about his planned 2-month visit to Cambridge and says

    “maybe I can get ten or so lectures out in that period of time.. I’m not exactly sure how I’m going to do it, if I’m going to rent a public theatre like I did in Toronto, I think that’s probably the plan…”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Isn’t it about time for that Brad Keyes to join the fray. A little subtle satire added to the wit above would not go astray, be amiss, add a je ne sais quoi of Nuremberg humour to this cool essay?


  9. Beth.
    How do you know he hasn’t already?
    A person of such flagitiousness camouflage needs no encouragement.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Another child has started a solitary climate protest, this time in Cambridge. Jason Scott-Warren, 8, doesn’t like the green stripes on the petrol station at the end of his road so at playtime he stands outside it holding a placard:

    The confident young protester says that petrol stations are painted green to make it look like their owners care about climate change* but they don’t and they really should because science says we have only eleven years to stop the planet warming so much that it will no longer be able to sustain life. He is going to keep coming back with his placard until the government obeys him and takes some serious action on climate change.

    When asked which actions he would like the government to take, Jason replied: ‘F*** off! How would I know? I’m only eight! Greta doesn’t know, I don’t know, none of us children f***ing knows! You’re the f***ing adults! You f***ing work it out! But do it soon! This is really f***ing important! We only have eleven years! Eleven f***ing years!’

    Jason’s mother later apologised for the language, explaining that her son hadn’t had his tea and had been very tired after being beeped at and insulted by motorists for nearly an hour.

    This isn’t Jason’s first protest. Last year he devised a campaign that helped get Toby Young sacked by a quango – so perhaps this one will work too.

    *Of the major non-supermarket petrol station chains in Britain, BP is the only one to use a lot of green in its logo and other branding. Green has been its main colour for at least 70 years.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Sorry to be a spoiler, but there’s a small fib in Vinny Burgoo’s comment above. You need to read the article at the Cambridge News he links to, then go to the Extinction Rebellion link which tells you:

    WHO WE ARE We are you! You are so welcome to join us and participate, you don’t need our permission, if you agree to follow our principles and values.
    We need to take action in the world and we need to look after ourselves. This rebellion is fuelled by our love, which is growing because we are willing to face the grief of these times. Grieving is part of our work. There are groups for connection and support for Extinction Rebellion Sisterhood, Brotherhood, Elders, Young People, Muslims, Volunteers, Families with Young Children and groups springing up across the UK. Here’s a list of resources that may help.
    If there’s anything else you want to know check out our FAQs.
    1. WE HAVE A SHARED VISION OF CHANGE Creating a world that is fit for generations to come.
    2. WE SET OUR MISSION ON WHAT IS NECESSARY Mobilising 3.5% of the population to achieve system change – using ideas such as “Momentum-driven organising” to achieve this.
    3. WE NEED A REGENERATIVE CULTURE Creating a culture which is healthy, resilient and adaptable.
    4. WE OPENLY CHALLENGE OURSELVES AND THIS TOXIC SYSTEM Leaving our comfort zones to take action for change.
    5. WE VALUE REFLECTING AND LEARNING Following a cycle of action, reflection, learning, and planning for more action. Learning from other movements and contexts as well as our own experiences.
    6. WE WELCOME EVERYONE AND EVERY PART OF EVERYONE Working actively to create safer and more accessible spaces.
    7. WE ACTIVELY MITIGATE FOR POWER Breaking down hierarchies of power for more equitable participation.
    8. WE AVOID BLAMING AND SHAMING We live in a toxic system, but no one individual is to blame.
    9. WE ARE A NON-VIOLENT NETWORK Using non-violent strategy and tactics as the most effective way to bring about change.
    10. WE ARE BASED ON AUTONOMY AND DECENTRALISATION We collectively create the structures we need to challenge power. Anyone who follows these core principles and values can take action in the name of Extinction Rebellion.

    VISION A world where we build thriving connections within our society and environment, bringing hope and enabling us to decide the direction of our lives and futures. An inclusive world, where we work consciously to ensure fair processes of collective decision-making, where creativity is prioritised, and where our diversity of gifts are recognised, celebrated and flourish.
    MISSION To spark and sustain a spirit of creative rebellion, which will enable much needed changes in our political, economic and social landscape. We endeavour to mobilise and train organisers to skilfully open up space, so that communities can develop the tools they need to address Britain’s deeply rooted problems. We work to transform our society into one that is compassionate, inclusive, sustainable, equitable and connected.
    AIMS Support and encourage a citizens uprising in the UK (of about 2 million people) involving low level and higher risk acts of civil disobedience by some (with others willing to support those that take actions). When ready, create a participatory, democratic process that discusses and improves a draft manifesto for change and a new constitution. This will involve creating a genuine democracy, alongside an economy to maximise well being and minimise harm.
    LOOK DEEPER Our organising structure to date has been based on who was willing to step forwards. As we grow we are redesigning our processes to be more participatory, de-centralised and inclusive. To do this we constantly take feedback.
    Have a read of the Extinction Rebellion Campaign Overview – How We Organise Together
    Here’s more information About RisingUp – An Overview, which includes more about our strategy, how we work together and an in-depth look at our Principles & Values.

    HOW THE EXTINCTION REBELLION SYSTEM WORKS [video with beardy bloke mumbling. Twelve thousand views on Youtube ]

    This is big. How many of you are old enough to remember Peter Cook’s Mr Whisty? Who would have thought that, 23 years after Cook’s death, the acolytes of his fictional character would be governing our energy policy and attempting to keep temperature rise to below 1.5°C by showing their bottoms to our elected representatives?)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.