Free speech is certainly the zeitgeist of 2016, with Spiked Online leading a campaign against students' unions. As a staunch supporter of free speech, and the lead representative at LSE Students' Union, we've seen some controversies that have portrayed our approach as hostile, as opposed to welcoming of this as a value.
Following my visits to faith schools, without exception I ask young people whether they feel their faith is a barrier to learning about LGBT+ people and the damage prejudicial attitudes can cause.Without exception they assure me that their faith tells them to love, to respect and to take care of people.
Gay men have sex. It might be an inconvenient truth but it's the truth nonetheless. We may be able to marry, adopt children, 'fit in' in a 'socially acceptable' sense, but select a featured image for an article showing two men kissing or, worse, write about the use of poppers within the context of gay sex and you may find yourself persona non grata.
Tyson Fury's nomination for BBC Sports Personality of The Year has caused a media frenzy over the decision to nominate a man with such outdated views on gays, women and abortion, and rightly so. As much as it should be all about the sporting achievement, it has to be said that whoever wins this accolade will have an enormous influence over any young people who may have chosen to follow in their footsteps, whether they like it or not.
The BBC must remove Fury from the shortlist, and make a statement that it does not agree with his views. Saying his shortlisting is 'not an endorsement of his views' is simply not enough. Thus far the BBC have refused, despite growing public debate, to even acknowledge they might have a problem. If we can't acknowledge the problem we can't even begin to work on the solution.