Fighting broke out yesterday in Oxford between two groups of students over a disagreement as to the nature of free speech. Oxford residents have been advised to stay indoors until further notice as heavily armed bands of students continue to roam the streets, killing or capturing anyone who does not practice free speech in the right way. Official estimates put the death toll at 503, but some sources have challenged this and have put the figure at the far higher 613 mark, with over 200 injured.
Reports suggest that it all started on Turl Street, when two groups of BNOCs exchanged insults as they passed each other on the pavement. This descended into a passionate argument about Marine Le Pen, which swelled in numbers as interested students walking by decided to joined in. After around half an hour, Turl Street was blocked with the crowd, and reports have since surfaced claiming that the noise could be heard from as far away as St. Hugh’s. What sparked the subsequent events is not entirely clear, but the argument soon turned into a physical fight, which then spread around the crowd.
Several eyewitness accounts of the beginnings of the conflict have emerged, all corroborating this story. Peter Frisk, a passerby, happened to witness how the violence began, described it as, “an absolute bloodbath”.
“It was really odd,” Frisk continued. “Although they were shouting at each other, everyone seemed to be broadly agreeing with everyone else – saying that free speech was jolly important and an essential part of our society, and so on. Then someone bellowed something along the lines of ‘I don’t like what you’re saying, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it’ and everything kicked off. The French students started screaming about misquoting, politics students about the difference between saying something and saying something on a platform, and then a guy in the centre of the crowd whipped out a sword and started beheading people.”
When asked whether he was traumatised by the incident, Frisk paused for a minute before replying, “No, not really. I wasn’t really that interested to be honest. I just wanted to get a panini from Heroes and they were all in the way.”
The OxStew also spoke to Carmina Wild, a student who managed to evade capture by two different groups on her way home later in the evening.
“The first group that got me,” she said, “asked me straight away to demonstrate my commitment to free speech. I didn’t really know what they meant, and was starting to panic, but then I noticed in the crowd a prominent Union member and guessed that they’d like something strong. I felt bad, but I had to survive, so I denounced the entirety of Islam as inherently violent and threatened to deport or sell into slavery anyone without three good A-levels. They let me go, but then five minutes later the other side grabbed me. This time I simply said ‘smash the patriarchy’, and they all cheered, gave me a free badge and wished me well on my way.”
The Proctors are attempting to get the battle under control, by confiscating weapons and giving extra essays to those known to have participated in order to keep them off the streets. In a statement today, they have promised the residents of Oxford that their city will soon be safe once more, even if it means using some of the Vice-Chancellor’s hard-earned cash to achieve this. They also pledged to launch an inquiry into the incident, but, when asked, refused to comment whether students would ever see the results of it.