I am glad that the full transcript of Jonathan’s e-mail has been published. Those of us that have the pleasure of knowing Jonathan will have found him to be an entertaining, informed, compassionate and fascinating architect and council member.
Whilst his somewhat theatrical rhetoric may not be to the taste of all, his message was one that I supported. Namely one of respect for all, whatever views we may have. My experience of council is at odds with the picture perpetuated by Elsie.
I have found her to be an inspiring and motivated individual and have a great deal of respect for her. However her continued attack on the RIBA is, I feel, detrimental to progressive and productive debate.
All that Jonathan was trying to say is that one has to respect the institute within which some of us are lucky enough to have a voice.
I am sure there are ways we can always do better however there is now a fear within some of the RIBA council members that any view expressed with which Elsie disagrees will be met by a claim of institutional racism or worse in the architectural press.
Jonathan championed debate, encouraged diverse views, disagreed passionately about some issues but above all respected and admired those with which he disagreed.
Let’s not let this perpetuate the myth that the RIBA is irrelevant or an old boys club. It’s our institute and it should be the crucible of informed debate that furthers our fantastic profession.