Antisemitism pervades America’s college campuses
Published 9:13 am Tuesday, October 24, 2023
After the horrific atrocities committed by Hamas in southern Israel on October 7, we witnessed a wave of antisemitism on college campuses by anti-Israel groups praising Hamas’ mass murder of Jews.
Remember: Hamas invaded Israel, murdered at least 1,400 people, and took at least 212 hostages. Still, student groups at colleges across the country came out in support of the killings. The national chapter of the notoriously pro-terror Students for Justice in Palestine called the worst massacre of Jews since the Holocaust a “historic win.” Thirty-one Harvard organizations blamed Israel for the Hamas attacks. Students at the University of Wisconsin-Madison chanted “Glory to the Martyrs” while the La Fuerza Student Association at California State University advertised their pro-Palestine protest with a picture of a paraglider – a blatant endorsement of the massacre at the Supernova music festival.
The reason many of these students are virulently anti-Israel – and in many cases antisemitic – is due to years of indoctrination by their colleges and universities. Since the attack on Israel, university faculty have come out in support of the slaughter. Northwestern University’s Asian American Studies Program faculty claimed that comparing Hamas to ISIS is “Islamophobic” and dismissed reports of Hamas beheading babies as “baseless.” A professor at Stanford was suspended after forcing Jewish students to sit in a corner, calling them “colonizers,” and referring to Hamas as “freedom fighters.” Meanwhile, a history professor at Cornell University called the Hamas attacks “exhilarating” and “energizing.”
Many of the same elite universities and groups who immediately sent out statements endorsing Black Lives Matter after George Floyd’s death in 2020 and criticizing the overturning of Roe v. Wade were slow to condemn the Hamas attacks. It took multiple statements from Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania to finally condemn Hamas’ acts of terrorism, only after receiving pressure from donors. Universities were never serious when they talked about “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” and issued platitudes about protecting their students from “hate speech” and “microaggressions.” When it comes to Zionist Jews, who encompass approximately 90 percent of the Jewish community, these universities allow hate to run amok.
While these instances of antisemitism are shocking and abominable, they should not be unexpected. For decades, the radical left has maintained an iron grip on academia. Institutions of higher education have taught students the Marxist idea that the world is divided between “oppressors” and the “oppressed.” The Jewish peoples’ 3,700-year-old connection to Israel is denied while students slander Israel as a “settler colonial enterprise” that is committing “ethnic cleansing” of the Palestinians. These poisonous ideas give Israel haters justification to call for the Jewish state’s annihilation.
In a continuous cycle, radical students go on to enter our nation’s most prestigious institutions and corrupt them – even Congress itself. Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and other left-wing lawmakers joined Black Lives Matter Grassroots and Black Lives Matter Chicago in condemning Israel for defending itself and repeatedly called for a ceasefire. In one of their most blatant examples of dishonesty and antisemitism, the Squad and much of the media immediately blamed Israel for allegedly bombing a Gaza hospital when the culprit turned out to be Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Incredibly, Tlaib stood by her debunked statement and refused to apologize.
We cannot allow antisemitism to fester under the guise of progressivism on our college campuses. It must be eradicated. Israel’s war against Hamas is not just a battle for the Jewish state; it is a fight between those who stand for the values and principles of Western Civilization and those who want to destroy the West. Universities should be pressured to defund antisemitic groups, and organizations that endorse terrorism should be ostracized from mainstream society. It’s time our institutions reinforce our younger generations with the right values. If they do, students will recognize Israel for what it is: a beacon of light in a region of darkness. Teaching the next generation the truth about Israel will ensure America will continue to be Israel and the Jewish peoples’ strongest ally for years to come.
(Marsha Blackburn represents Tennessee in the U.S. Senate.)