Sarrah Le Marquand writes in the Daily Telegraph:
Here, in an environment in which progressive ideas are fostered and an innate belief in equality is (rightfully) encouraged, the thought of being labelled “racist” is particularly horrifying.
So while in many aspects of campus life the goals of feminism are proudly championed, even the faintest risk of being accused of cultural insensitivity is all but guaranteed to see any commitment to gender equality suddenly discarded.
If there’s a hierarchy in the hallowed halls of our nation’s tertiary institutions whenever a potential clash of ideology arises, it goes something like this: Muslims and then women. In that order.
This is an environment in which even the most passionate of women’s advocates can be rendered mute by a suggestion they are engaging in anti-Islam rhetoric. …
Which is pretty much how events unfolded at the University of Western Sydney last Thursday night when men and women were asked to sit apart at an event organised by the Muslim Students’ Association.
“Brothers to the front” and “sisters” to the back of the room was the instruction politely issued to The Daily Telegraph’s male reporter when he initially sat among the women.
Women being made to sit in the back of the room – a bit like being made to sit at the back of the bus.