It throve on wounds: of all its hundred heads I cut off one but from its neck two more sprang to succeed it, stronger than before! [9. 69 ff (trans. Melville)]
And so it seems with this beast of an academic boycott: the more we fight it, the more it is cut down, the stronger it seems to re-emerge, year upon year, undaunted by the clear disapprobation of those the union is meant to represent, the overwhelmingly anti-boycott majority in the rank & file (as gleaned in a variety of reliable branch & other polls - short, of course, of the show-stopping ballot of UCU members which the boycotters so fear and contrive to avoid); emboldened, apparently, by a whole compendium of legal opinion, obtained through wasteful expenditure of union resources which are meant to be so scarce, each one attesting to the racist & illegal nature of this campaign, culminating, let us not forget, in the opinion of counsel authored in 2007 by none other than the godfather of our anti-discrimination and human rights laws. If none of this could stop this beast's destructive sweep, what will it take?
Not even half a year after it seemed to have been conclusively & categorically found to be in breach of those laws, marking yet another of those shameful moments when British unions seemed to want to be the instigators of racism, at the very earliest opportunity, the beast returns and UCU is yet again pushing a racist and illegal proposal. (For previous sightings of this monster and the story of the battle against it, see here.)
Remember, the hydra killed with its poisonous breath, just as this boycott beast harms with its venomous hot air, constantly blowing in places like the Bigot's Playground (UCU Activist List) all this time, regardless of the official position; and now, yet again, officially, by the terms of this latest proposed UCU motion, which wants to mandate yet more of this toxic, hateful posturing up & down our campuses, as if they are not already bad enough.
If we look to the Hydra myth for how this will turn out, it's not looking too good. The only way Hercules came out victorious was to burn the monster's severed stumps, thereby cauterizing the wounds and preventing regeneration of any more of those deadly heads. Why does UCU insist on playing so perilously close to the fire?
If only this were just the stuff of myths...