Imagine, if you will, a fictional organization called Students for Justice in the United States that focuses on African-American urban crime. Imagine that this organization suggested that black misbehavior is undermining the United States economically and educationally, socially and culturally.
What if thirty, or so, of such students were to gather outside the Cesar Chavez Student Center at San Francisco State University (SFSU) and literally call for the murder of black people.
How do you suppose the university would respond?
What would President Wong do under such circumstances?
I think that we can all agree that those students would not remain students at SFSU for very long, if, in fact, they did not end up in prison. There is not the slightest doubt in my mind, however, that the university would expel those students and rightly so.
Yet, somehow, against all common human decency, the General Union of Palestine Students (GUPS) is allowed to call for the murder of Jews (at least, those in Israel) via calls for “intifada” on university property. Furthermore, the university seems to have no problem with such behavior, presumably on the grounds of free speech.
There is a clear and obvious double-standard wherein SFSU, and virtually all other universities around the country, have created two classes of students. There are those whose people must be protected as a matter of conscience and of social justice and those who can be thrown to the wolves, also allegedly as a matter of conscience and social justice.
Black people, as an historically persecuted minority in the United States and in the lineage of African-American slaves, are a protected minority within US academia. No one would ever think it appropriate on an American campus to call for harm to black people and any student who did so would be forthrightly expelled, and rightly so.
Yet, for some reason, calling for the murder of Jewish people, via calls for intifada, is just fine as far as virtually every university administration in this country is concerned.
How is this possible?
Why is it OK to call for the murder of Jews on American campuses, but to call for the murder of black people is to lose one’s humanity and likely one’s position at the university?
There are two possible reasons that come directly to mind. The first is that university administrators throughout the country are almost to a person ignorant of what the term “intifada” suggests – which is the murder of Jews – or that they generally think that the Jews of the Middle East richly deserve whatever beating Palestinian-Arabs wish to give them.
I find it rather difficult to believe that university administrators in the United States do not know that calls for intifada are calls for the murder of Jews in Israel, if not elsewhere. When the Palestinian-Arabs called for the recent “Car Ramming Intifada” this was an image they employed to encourage their fellow Arabs to mercilessly run Jews down with their automobiles.
When student activists in organizations like GUPS call for intifada, this is precisely the kind of thing that they want to see. They want to see dead Jews and if not through a “Car Ramming Intifada” then by any means necessary.
That a full-grown bureaucrat could rise to the prominent position of a university administrator while being entirely ignorant of the fact that calling for an intifada is the same as calling for the murder of Jews seems highly unlikely.
What is plausible, however, is that these administrators tend to see the Arab conflict with the Jews of the Middle East in a manner similar to GUPS and any number of anti-Zionist faculty members.
If they did not agree then there is no possible justification for funding calls for genocide through funding such organizations.
Thus it is highly likely that the prevailing academic atmosphere throughout the country is one of hostility toward Zionism and toward the Jewish State of Israel. But we knew that already, didn’t we?
This hostility is grounded in a very human moral imperative.
They often tend to think that the lesson that Jews came away with from the Shoah was not a lesson of compassion, but rather a series of lessons on how to be good Nazis. I don’t want to overstate it, or be flip, but essentially they have absorbed (through cultural osmosis) the so-called “Palestinian narrative.” That is, the tendency on all levels of academia – and now, as we are finding, in the secondary schools, as well – a belief in the general injustice not only of Zionist behavior, but of Zionist ideology… whatever they take that to be exactly.
Thus, they honestly tend to believe that, feeling justified by the Holocaust, the Jews pushed the indigenous population off of their land and subjugated those who remained to racist persecution that continues to this day.
So, why wouldn’t university administrators have empathy for, as they see it, Palestinian students standing up for justice for their own people through a popular uprising?
But as my dear old friend Dan Bielak used to say, “Just tell the truth.”
That may not be quite so easy as it sounds, but we have it on our side and we should not be shy about using it.
Here’s a truth:
The Jews, along with the Christians, lived as persecuted minorities under Arab-Muslim Qur’anic rule for 13 fun-filled centuries.
Why don’t we start the discussion there?