Monday, August 22, 2016

LA Times Report on UCI/SJP Rulling

                                                     "Yeah, we'll crack down on anti-Semitism, won't we Boys?"

The LA Times and its subsidiary, The Daily Pilot, have run a story on the "punishment" meted out to Students for Justice in Palestine for their May 18 disruption of a Jewish event on the UC Irvine campus.

Incredibly, UCI appears to have discounted the claims of the Jewish students involved, most of whom were female, as well as eyewitness testimony of College Republicans, the latter of whom recently prevailed over the administration in a controversy in which UCI tried to suspend CR over the recent appearance by Milo Yiannopoulos. I also find it incredible that UCI found that the actions of SJP were not threatening.

It is ironic that this finding by UCI comes on the heels of an announcement by UCI Chancellor Howard Gillman of an initiative designed to apply the principles on intolerance statement recently passed by the UC Regents, a statement that specifically addressed the problem of anti-Semitism on UC campuses. Yet, Gillman's initiative announcement only addressed intolerance in a general sense. This latest finding regarding SJP and the slap on the wrist punishment imposed tells me that Gillman's initiative is probably cosmetic and designed merely to silence critics.

Students for Justice in Palestine should be permanently banned from UCI-and all other campuses across the nation. It is a brown shirt organization founded by Hatem Bazian, a man who once called for an intifada in America. It has used brown shirt tactics on campus after campus. This is not an incident that got out of hand. It was part of a well-designed strategy of silencing pro-Israel voices on campus through disruption and intimidation.

In addition, Gillman and his colleagues across the nation should issue a clear statement to their communities that anti-Semitism will not be tolerated on campus-and follow up with strong punishment when violations occur.

Until Gillman and his vice chancellor, Thomas Parham, begin taking concrete steps to combat this scourge, I cannot believe that UCI takes this problem seriously.

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