Maggi Hambling just doesn't get it!


In response to the national media storm following Maggi Hambling’s rabid racist comments about slavery at the University of Suffolk, she has now reluctantly responded:

As somebody who has been fighting prejudice, in all its forms, all my life, I am very upset that my comments, intended as jokes, were misconstrued as racist. In supporting the Ipswich Art School tirelessly over the years, in all it does, it was never my intention to upset anybody."

This was her rant regarding the ’12 Years a Slave’ and slavery in general.

(It is a) frightfully boring slave film,"

she told the audience at the University Campus Suffolk in Ipswich.

In the end I didn’t care about the f****** slave. Anyway, slaves would be very handy. I wouldn’t mind a few," she added.

Black student Jason Haye, who sat through her rambling rant explained exclusively to OBV that he was really 'upset about what he heard'.

This, he added has been compounded by the University’s lack of statement condemning her outburst, and in some University quarters at Suffolk, suggesting that no action should be taken because it might infringe Hambling’s freedom of speech, and he shouldn’t be so sensitive.

As a result of the Daily Mail covering the story, Hambling makes a statement which suggests she is oblivious that her comments could be seen as anything but racially offensive.

Another way of looking at this would be to ask anyone in the Jewish community if jokes about the Holocaust are funny, and/or acceptable? No, of course not.

So why should Black people find the rape, torture, murder and slavery of over 20 million people amusing?

Nobody has misconstrued Hambling's comments. They are racially offensive and if she had a shred of good grace, -which I doubt- she'd apologise, to the students, to the university and others she's offended.

Jason Haye, the student who challenged Hambling’s bigotry is to meet again the University head, Richard Lister, to resolve the matter.

Having had ample time now to digest all the facts, I hope that on behalf of the University, Provost Richard Lister apologies to Jason particularly for the way some staff sought to dismiss his concerns, but also that he publically makes clear that Hambling’s offensive comments cannot hide behind the veil of ‘freedom of speech’, and that they are unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

Simon Woolley