We all know about the victim culture championed by campus activists: the safe spaces and newspaper bans and trigger warning; the calls for statue destruction and the re-writing of history; the virtue-signalling and hypocrisy of mainly rich white kids with an inflated sense of their own importance.

We know how it came to this, too: generations of do-good brainwashing in classrooms and lecture halls, with the BBC and the Guardian always ready to lend a hand. But what we hadn’t foreseen is how the universities would harness technology to further this agenda.

As the Evening Standard revealed this week, Buckingham University has been inviting mentally fragile students – whom it has already encouraged in their feelings of exclusion or persecution – to volunteer for online monitoring.

These kids are giving permission to their guardians to spy on their social media and use the analysis to assess students’ mental health and dream up means of improving it; which is where it all gets really spooky – because the means include fighting, among other cultures, that of the ‘lad’.

Bizarre. A gathering of young men full of booze, hormones and insecurity may not be one’s ideal milieu, but it’s not illegal. If you are so offended by their existence that you suffer mental deterioration, the answer is not to suppress the lads but to seek specialist help: some assertiveness training, perhaps.

But how would the faculty like that? Imagine if students were to really rock the boat, and demand that their minds – now so frequently closed and sabotaged – were opened? Well, they wouldn’t – but that’s too bad for them. There has been a paradigm shift. And to borrow a phrase, it’s time to drain the swamp.

by Julia Dixon