Steve Allen: 'Oxford students should vote on Magdalen pronunciation instead'

Queen Elizabeth II during a visit to HMS Queen Elizabeth at HM Naval Base, Portsmouth, ahead of the

Some students in Oxford’s Magdalen College voted to remove a portrait of the Queen from their common room - Credit: PA Images

I was probably an idiot at university. I studied chemistry and we were always invited to parties as we could get pure ethanol to add to any punch and really make the evening go with a swing, if by swinging you mean people being sick everywhere.

I didn’t go to a fancy university so no one expected me to not be an idiot. However, people going to Oxford are meant to be really clever or possibly good at rowing.

It, therefore, comes as a shock to hear that some students in Oxford’s Magdalen College have voted to remove a photograph of the Queen hanging on the common room wall to make it more welcoming.

Steve Allen.

Steve Allen will not be taking a trip around the moon anytime soon - Credit: Steve Allen

If they really wanted to make it more welcoming they would vote to sort out the pronunciation of Magdalen. Nothing reminds you that you’re working class like having some posh person tell you not to sound out the 'g'.

They deemed the image a symbol of “recent colonial history”. If you are really against the concept of people benefiting from the privileged of a historical institution, then don’t go to the University of Oxford.


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Some people have said they have “cancelled the Queen”. I don’t think it goes that far.

I’m sure she would still be allowed to visit but maybe not play cricket. And Harry and Meghan’s new baby might not be welcome, not with a name that might remind people of recent colonial history.

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Obviously people are free to have, or not have, any photos that they like and we shouldn’t be forced to have an image of our head of state on the wall. That’s a little too North Korean for most of us.

But we are also free to point out that such actions might be a little silly. Good luck giving away all of the money that she’s on.

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