Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Getting what he asked for good and hard

The Auckland University Students' Association has had enough of bigots taking their money to spread hate, and are moving to disaffiliate them. Voluntary student membership campaigner DPF is outraged by this. But bluntly, this is what he asked for. AUSA is now a completely voluntary association, an incorporated society under the Incorporated Societies Act 1908. It is, in law, no different from your local rugby club - or the National Party. And like those other groups, it has rights to freedom of association and freedom of expression and no obligation to support or promote groups or viewpoints its members disagree with. It might have done once, when membership was compelled by law. But it certainly doesn't now, any more than the National Party is compelled to support the Coal Action Network or the Animal Liberation Front or the Communist Party of Aotearoa. And if DPF doesn't like that, he has only himself to blame. He got exactly what he asked for, and now he can suck it.