On Tuesday I was overwhelmed to see the House of Commons resoundingly support the proposal to introduce Same Sex Marriage. This is a fantastic step forward for the equality of LGBT people. It was great to see students across the country lobbying their MPs, passing motions at student councils and getting involved in the NUS ‘Come out for Equal Marriage’ campaign, all to support this important cause.

The LGBT liberation campaign is so important. For far too long the LGBT community has had its basic rights suppressed. Whilst this is one giant step in the right direction, we must remember that there is still a long way to go. We need to continue to fight to repeal the blood ban law and look at how we genuinely tackle homophobia and the bullying that is still so prevalent in society. 

We must reflect on the battles we still have to face whether at home or abroad. Whilst I celebrate this week, I would encourage you all to take a moment to remember the battles the lie ahead. We all too often read with horror of young LGBT people committing suicide because the bullying got too much; the struggle across the world to keep being gay legal; and the homophobia that we still have to tackle here at home.

Our world is changing and once again, when the world changed, the student movement stood at the forefront! For now I’m just excited I can say “I do”.


I am pleased to see that Inanimate Carbon Rod has been successfully nominated for NUS President. The arduous process that Rod has had to go through in order to get onto the ballot paper is lengthy and archaic, and a perfect example of why the NUS needs to be more open and inclusive. The whole process is angled against the ordinary student engaging with these elections – to nominate someone they must obtain letter headed paper from their Student Union. That’s very easy if you’re Student Union President, but what about the distance learners and part time students who work during the day? Whatever the result of this election, I hope things will be opened up to engage more people next year.

Whilst it is good to see Rod on the ballot paper, we do have some difference. I share Rod’s desire for a strong student movement; however I won’t be supporting construction of the Workers’ Bomb. Indeed, I fear this will only lead to an arms race among other national unions within the region, spreading instability across the European Student’s Union, and the development of a state of mutually assured destruction. I recognise Inanimate Carbon Rod’s resistance to explosives, but the development of a Workers’ Bomb may have more detrimental effects on us ‘meatbags’.

Employment and employability is something I feel strongly about, and have discussed it in my manifesto. However the creation of jobs through the construction of 8,000,000 ‘death cyborgs’ is, perhaps, not the best option. Rather than enriching uranium or designing an army of blood hungry death robots, I believe it’s time to go back to basics and build an NUS every student, meatbag or inanimate, can be proud of.

Peter Smallwood

UPDATE: We have obtained footage of what a world controlled by Inanimate Carbon Rod, and his army of cyborgs, may look like;

    Peter Smallwood

    Candidate for NUS President. Its time we built an NUS students are proud to belong to. #BacktoBasics


    February 2013