We can't keep shutting ourselves off from these views and hoping they'll go away. If we do, and we try to censor them, they'll only grow, and the world will move even further away from where we want it to be. However uncomfortable we find it, it's only by listening to people with these views that we can see where they come from, understand their appeal, and ultimately defeat them..
Nicolas Sarkozy's announcement on Wednesday that, if elected president of France in May 2017, he would give Britain a chance to reverse the Brexit vote, has raised eyebrows across the European Union. Can such a decision, democratically taken by the people of a sovereign member state of the EU, be overlooked? What's in it for Sarkozy?
Europe is already on life support, if a Frexit referendum would to go ahead it would be on death row. The EU without Britain is a catastrophe, the EU without France is Armageddon. The European project would cease to exist. What would then happen in the vacuum that ensues is food for thought, and is a thought that some of the big guns, like Putin must be eyeing with glee.
Unfortunately, for those people who really wanted to debate EU membership and consider voting to leave, they aren't going to get their chance. The referendum has nothing to do with those issues or even EU membership - and for this reason I would encourage everyone of a like mind (to leave) to vote Remain.
This week, the NUS finished its current "Students Not Suspects" tour which was allegedly aimed at fighting the Government's new Prevent strategy to deal with extremism, particularly the threat of Islamist extremism. While the Prevent strategy certainly has its flaws, the NUS's diagnosis is woefully misguided...
Though Russia has trumpeted its goal of fighting fascism more or less continuously since the Second World War, many in Europe have assumed such an ideology to be definitively outmoded. Today, the West must figure out how to speak to disenfranchised citizens in a meaningful way, to show them that dysfunctional democracies can be reformed, and that directing political frustration at society's most vulnerable members is never a constructive way forward.
In France, since the European elections of May 2014, and Marine le Pen's breath-taking 25% of the vote - to the ruling Socialists' paltry 13% - she has said very little. She does not need to; between them, the left and the right are opening up a royal road for her to go through to the second round of the presidential elections in 2017...