WTF? Lib Dem MP Stephen Gilbert stands up for use of youth argot

You will all be thinking about leaving school in a few weeks and must be thinking ‘WTF’ about going to university.

So said Stephen Gilbert, Lib Dem MP for St Austell and Newquay, when addressing an assembly of 200 Year 11 students at a local community college, prompting a local Tory councillor to complain to the school, accusing Mr Gilbert of being “out of touch”.

Headteacher David Parker is more forgiving: “I was there at the time and I know people have picked up on something that was said during the talk. Perhaps if he had thought about it before he said it he wouldn’t have used that phrase but maybe it was a slip of the tongue. If he had asked me before whether that was an appropriate term to use I would have said probably not. I am hoping not to dwell on the incident too much as the rest of the MP’s speech was very eloquent and engaging.”

As for Stephen, he’s unrepentant:

All I have to say in reply to this is OMG. From my perspective this is a nonsense political attack and is a bit petty. It was nothing more than a throwaway remark and I clearly wouldn’t have stood in front of a group of 16-year-olds and sworn. I don’t have a career suicide tendency.

Meeting constituents is a part of this job which I treasure the most. Needless to say, no offence was intended in my comments. I was simply communicating with a group of students in a language which they understand.

Sounds like a SIATC* to the Voice.

* Storm in a tea cup. As the young people say all the time.

Read more by or more about .
This entry was posted in News.


  • Couldn’t agree more, what a joke the Tory is. If the most the he can do is to pick up the use of WTF he’d better stay away from teenagers. It sometimes takes me a few minutes to work out what my 19 year means in a text !!!! A note of caution though, there is a danger of a William Hague baseball cap moment if it is over used by older people.

    I am not sure about SIATC though…………………..

  • its not a storm in a tea cup its a playground squabble.

    so our MP’s are human, im certain every single one of the pupils had heard far worse in their lives so sorry where is the story?

  • OMG! ROTFL – IMO & FWIW what’s wrong with him connecting in a way they understand – surely one of the issues that comes back time and time again, is that young people feel alienated by politics, defo as u put it a SIATC 😉

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?


Recent Comments

  • Lorenzo Cherin
    As for the link, it is a very considered piece. But it is designed to support the writer's viewpoint, as I mention, he almost seems to push the view , he was wr...
  • Lorenzo Cherin
    Laurence Cox Very unsure as why you presume i did my best to avoid your link, when I did no such thing! You presume you know a lot about my approach but seem...
  • David Raw
    On topic : How Sir Edward's comments were reported in the Glasgow Herald : "THE Liberal Democrat leader has said his party is no longer interested in t...
  • Katharine Pindar
    Peter Hirst, that is an admirable idea. But it seems that the Federal Conference Committee will decide on what is going to be debated regardless of any strength...
  • Laurence Cox
    @Lorenzo Cherin Since you haven't bothered to read the reference I cited, here is what Tom Chivers says: "Similarly, there’s been a bit of a hoo-hah abo...