[Note: this post contains descriptions of violence against women.]

UCLU’s newly created full-time Women’s Officer position has a man running for it. Kirk Sneade is, judging from his actions over the past few days, clearly not a self-identifying woman but a deeply offensive and misogynist man. He writes in his manifesto: “Kirk wants to make clear his desire to attend all Women’s forums to talk about Important Woman Issues such as hair dressing, shopping and walking sassily away from confrontations with your exes.”

Snead continues: “[I] would also like to formally change the name of the Print-Room Cafe to the Pretty-Girl Cafe”. He later “suggests” “perhaps herding up the pretty girls you see around campus and keeping them ready for emergency transport to the Roxy later on when things start to get a little dry.” Sneade belittles UCLU Womens Forum’s discussion of banning Chris Brown’s music in UCLU, sarcastically writing on his campaign page on Facebook: “I’m glad this issue is being addressed because every time I hear Chris Brown I feel the need to punch the nearest woman in the face”. His campaign video is a clip from Star Trek of captain Kirk kissing a woman and then hitting her in the face. He has described his campaign as “cutting irony”.

UCLU have refused to publish Sneade’s manifesto, video and photo. Sam Gaus, Democracy and Communications Officer, told us he made a decision not to publish any of Sneade’s materials pending the Returning Officer, Layth Hanbali’s decision. “I felt it to be offensive” Gaus told us. Sneade’s Facebook page reads: “They took away our manifesto, but they can never take our freedom”. The manifesto he submitted is available here.

Sneade this morning attended the Candidates’ Breakfast, an election event where those running for positions get to meet one another. At the breakfast, he compared UCLU’s refusal to publish his campaign materials to the persecution of communists in Nazi Germany. Ben Towse, a candidate for Postgraduate officer, asked Sneade “are you comparing this to the Holocaust?”, to which Sneade answered in the affirmative.

Defending himself on Facebook Sneade wrote, “I have actually had no input into what has been written/said… The manifesto, video and campaign are the result of shadow members.” He later added “The original manifesto was submitted as subversive catalyst to spark interest in the position and increase the voting turnout this year.”

Laura Terry, LGBT+ Officer and candidate for Welfare and International officer, described Sneade as a “vile misogynist” and his actions as “completely inexcusable”; “it’s an attack on liberation campaigns” she added. Beth Sutton, the current Women’s Officer and candidate for the full-time position, told us “Kirk Sneade represents everything liberation campaigns seek to fight against.” She went on to urge people to “Oppose hate speech. Support liberation. Smash Kirk and smash the patriarchy.” UCLU have already recieved several complaints.

Helen Chandler-Wilde and Beth Sutton, the other two candidates for Women’s Officer, are in the process of writing a statement which will be released later today at ucluwomensnetwork.wordpress.com

Oscar Webb