Story at a glance:
- An American grad student from Stanford led a vote to remove Queen Elizabeth II from an Oxford University common area.
- There are other portraits of the Queen throughout Oxford University.
- The American student comes from a wealthy family and attended the same school as President Obama’s children.
An American student led a movement at Oxford University to have Queen Elizabeth II’s portrait removed from one area through a voting process.
Stanford University graduate Matthew Katzman cited the reason why he wanted the queen’s picture removed from the Magdalen’s Middle Common Room was due to her representing “colonial history,” The New York Post reported.
What troubles some British officials like U.K. Education Secretary Gavin Williamson, who tweeted, “[The Queen] is the head of state and a symbol of what is best about the UK,” is that Katzman is the privileged white son of a millionaire commercial lawyer in Washington, D.C.
His father, Scott Katzman, 65, has a mansion worth more than $5.5 million, and the student previously attended Sidwell Friends School, a private pre-K through high school facility, with other D.C. elites like Sasha and Malia Obama (who could have been his former classmate), Nancy Reagan, Chelsea Clinton, President Biden’s grandchildren and a child of former President Nixon.
The Post has estimated that his total education must have cost at least $640,000 if Sidwell costs $48,000 per year.
Katzman, a computer science and Captain America enthusiast, said he was not wanting to have all of the Queen’s portraits removed; there are many others throughout the school.
“The royal family is on display in many areas of the college, and it was ultimately agreed that it was an unnecessary addition to the common room,” Katzman said.
“It was decided that the room should be a welcoming, neutral place for all members regardless of background, demographic, or views,” he said.
“No stance was taken on the Queen or the royal family — the conclusion was simply that there were better places for this print to be hung,” he said.
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