The Orange County Independent Task Force on Anti-Semitism expresses disappointment in UC Irvine’s decision to reduce the recommended suspension of the Muslim Student Union (MSU) from one year to ten weeks. The reduction in the suspension seems to ignore what UCI said in its initial one year suspension that: Based on emails from members of the MSU, the disruption of Ambassador Michael Oren’s speech was planned.
The Task Force Report issued on February 12, 2008 exposed the long standing physical and verbal harassment of Jewish students at UCI. That harassment recently culminated in the actions that occurred at Ambassador Oren’s speech.
While the Task Force appreciates that UCI seems to be recognizing that Anti-Semitism is a major problem at UCI by maintaining the suspension of the MSU, there clearly exists a lack of courage and moral conviction to fight hatred on campus by the UCI administration. The failure of UCI to suspend the MSU for one year will allow that organization to continue its annual “hate week” activities that occur in the Spring. Therefore, the sanction issued by the University is merely a “slap on the wrist” and is unlikely to quell future Anti-Semitic harassment and hatred on the UCI campus.