In an age of student idiocy, The Mallard offers a glimmer of hope

Benjamin Mackenzie takes a look at The Mallard, a UK student conservative publication on the front line of the identity politics war. It’s a very nice touch to see young conservatives taking the fight to the left.

The reputation of the student “community” has arguably never been worse. Campuses across the UK have become bastions of self-righteous, self-centred, insulated, sensitive censors – so absolutely certain of their innate goodness and virtue that anything other than a full capitulation in the face of their postmodernist outlook is heretical.

Conservatives across the country keep a keen eye on student politics, realising that a sickness in university can become a plague in society. We haven’t had much to enjoy in our observation, but there are glimmers of hope; The Mallard is one of those glimmers.

The Mallard is a student, conservative publication run by Jake Scott and his fantastic team. While it is clear from my observations that the work produced is thoughtful, provoking and necessary, The Mallard do have defined and valiant aims for their site.

With a growing proliferation of blogs all over the internet, it’s a handy tool for conservatives to know which ones are worth a look. I can tell you The Mallard is certainly worth a look for anyone seeking an understanding of the difficulties conservatives face on campus, the potential threat that the next generation of university graduates may pose to a free society, but most importantly for me, the willingness of conservatives to continue fighting the good fight in an institution that is so hostile.

The Mallard defines itself as wanting to encourage “a broad church of thought, from High Tories to libertarians on university campuses to speak out, address topics important to them and question the left-leaning bias on campuses”. The Burkean may concentrate solely on social conservatism, but when taking on the university monster, it’s probably better to rally all likeminded people.

The Mallard has the valiant task of fighting on the front lines of the progressive war on conservatism and for that they must be commended. When conservatism in Western democracies can appear on the wane, it’s always refreshing to see credible attempts at building a narrative that all sides of conservatism can work towards. Built into this outlook is a strong, conservative sense of pragmatism. An understanding that when the forces of the left have never appeared more unified, conservatives can sometimes be too puritanical and can sometimes fail to build winning alliances. I have no doubt that The Mallard acts as the perfect place for students of all conservative and libertarian persuasions to seek common ground for the sake of the future.

In a marked difference from our left-leaning opponents, The Mallard describes itself as wanting to “open, rather than close, debate around important issues through a non-traditional format”, which in itself is a breath of fresh air for anyone concerned with student politics. The job is tough, yet the willingness on the part of the Mallards editor’s gives me confidence in their ability to fight back against growing censorship and the shutting down of debate.

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The Mallard is an open platform and there appear no safe-spaces; all the better the dissemination of good ideas! The worrying growth of no-platforming and the arguably more worrying insistence by some universities (most notably in the U.S) on ridiculous security fees for small societies that cripple their budgets through no fault of their own are alarming developments and I hope to see The Mallard working to counter this, while very much hoping it doesn’t fall foul of the University diktats themselves!

Finally, and arguably most importantly from my perspective, The Mallard seeks to “allow right-leaning students to express themselves on issues other than politics, and combat the left-wing news, particularly in student groups, by offering a level playing field”.

As Burkean Conservatives, we at The Burkean have argued that many of the fights we now face in our society against the progressive blob are a-political. The long march on the institutions has resulted in upheaval – not only for the established societal orders that people are now desperately clambering to preserve the remnants of – but also for the limited perspectives which are now on offer in the world.

The Mallard is seeking to reverse this trend and to offer people a credible alternative to the nonsense pushed by students Unions and other self-absorbed bodies that couldn’t care less about students. It’s a tough fight, but one which I believe they are prepared for.

We are proud at The Burkean to offer The Mallard our endorsement as a sensible and pragmatic approach to organising conservatism on campus. And considering the size of the battle they face, it might be worth heading over to The Mallard to offer them your support as well!

You can visit The Mallard by clicking on the following link!


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