American Universities Have Been Complicit, Resulting in Today's AntisemitismBy Joy Liwanag
In recent years, American college campuses have become hotspots not only for learning but also for racial grievance and violence. This unsettling trend has now escalated to the celebration of terrorism and intimidation of Jewish students, prompting the Department of Education to investigate antisemitism at five K-12 and/or universities.
Cornell's Disturbing Incidents
One of the universities facing scrutiny is Cornell, where explicit and violent threats have recently come to light. Last month, 21-year-old student Patrick Dai publicly declared his intent to "shoot up" a kosher dining facility on campus. While Dai's mental state is under investigation, other Cornell students shockingly celebrated Hamas' massacre of Israeli civilians. Even more disturbingly, a Cornell professor found the act of butchery "exhilarating."
Cornell President Martha Pollack, to her credit, unequivocally condemned Hamas, antisemitism, and those at the university who glorify "the evilness of Hamas terrorism." However, this commendable stance raises questions about Pollack's previous silence on the Black Lives Matter (BLM) riots that gripped American cities for months after the killing of George Floyd.
Corporate and Institutional Virtue-Signaling
When confronted about her silence on the BLM riots, the Cornell Alumni Affairs Office shared statements issued by Pollack in June 2020. These statements unintentionally underscore her deafening silence before the crimes of the racial grievance mob. In one such statement, Pollack expressed, "We are ashamed of the injustices that are perpetrated in our country, every day, against people of color."
Subsequently, there was an unveiling of initiatives focused on racial justice. These initiatives encompassed Zoom sessions addressing "institutional racism and the context of the current protests," support for research on topics related to "systemic racism, colonialism, bias, and inequity," and obligatory staff training on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).
Major corporations also engaged in virtue-signaling during the BLM riots. Amazon, Twitter (now X), Netflix, Nike, Citigroup, Walmart, McDonald's, Coca-Cola, Apple, Target, Wendy's, and other corporate giants posted declarations in solidarity with the Black community. Even national retail and restaurant chains whose branches were looted or burned uttered not a word about law and order. The desire to appease and virtue-signal seemingly trumped all common sense and human decency.
Now, a few years later, the antisemitic rhetoric on college campuses has taken a grotesque turn. Instead of chanting racist epithets against White people and the police, left-wing protesters are proclaiming Israel as racist and illegitimate, all while spewing vile antisemitic tropes. Such overt racism in the 21st century is alarming but not entirely surprising.
Decades of Ignored Violence
For decades, American universities, along with the mainstream media and the American Left, have planted the seeds of today's celebratory antisemitism. This has been achieved through the repeated ignorance or outright condoning of violence, as long as it was perceived to come from oppressed groups against supposed oppressors.
The acts of violence carried out by BLM and Antifa following George Floyd's death were rationalized and deemed justifiable, being framed as courageous efforts against "systemic racism." Universities, including Cornell, had a track record of capitulating to student violence, exemplified by instances such as establishing dormitories as appeasements during racially motivated takeovers in 1969 and 1993. Universities, including Cornell, had a history of caving to student violence, with examples such as the creation of dormitories as concessions to racially motivated takeovers in 1969 and 1993. This legacy of appeasement has only fueled further violence.
The recent antisemitic rants from students and professors alike on campuses across the country have exposed just how morally perverse the country's universities have become. It highlights the direct complicity of these institutions in creating young people who are not open-minded, tolerant, fair, or capable of critical thinking. Instead, they unabashedly call for the death of Jews.
While statements condemning antisemitism and the arrest of dangerous individuals are the absolute minimum that must happen, universities must also cease kowtowing to the purveyors of racial grievances and fake oppression narratives. If they fail to do so, higher education in America, along with the rule of law and true justice, faces a grim future. The disturbing trend of antisemitism on American campuses must be confronted head-on, lest it further erodes the values these institutions are meant to uphold.