College President Demands Review of SJP Status on Campus

Vassar’s SJP sort of apologizes for anti-Israel, Nazi cartoon

College president demands review of pro-Palestinian group’s status on campus; organization says incident was a mistake

BY AMANDA BORSCHEL-DAN   May 16, 2014  The Times of Israel

Nazi propaganda poster used by Vassar's chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine.

Nazi propaganda poster used by

Vassar’s chapter of Students for

Justice in Palestine.

Vassar College was the battleground this week for Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and pro-Israel advocates in a war waged through social media — and media stunts.

The small liberal arts college 75 miles (120 km) outside New York city has fewer than 2,500 students, but according to its website, hosts some 1,500 clubs and activities. Among them are a Hillel house recently gone rogue as an Open Hillel chapter demanding an open discussion of the Israeli-Palestinian struggle, the more militant Students for Justice in Palestine, and the Vassar Conservative-Libertarian Union (VCLU).

 Set in an idyllic oasis in Poughkeepsie, the college has long been a hotbed of radical liberal thinkers. For some former students, however, the radical has crossed the line into irrational in SJP’s recent use of Nazi propaganda to illustrate the alleged pervasiveness of Zionism in the halls of power.

SJP’s Tumblr account recently published a Nazi propaganda poster by Norwegian artist Harald Damsleth captioned “Liberators” in which a many limbed monster decorated with the US flag, holding a money bag grasped by a long-nosed banker, and wearing a Star of David as a loin cloth, stomps on houses of the innocent.

Vassar President Catherine Hill released an email Wednesday stating that SJP’s status as a campus organization is called into question. Continue reading

Courageous University of California Student Speaks About Continuing Campus Anti-Semitism

Anti-Semitism at Cal

By  Special to the Daily Cal

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

When a recent report from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, dismissed claims that the university had failed to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitism on campus, many thought that it could create a watershed moment for Berkeley.  Leading the fray was The Daily Californian, which made the almost Panglossian prediction that the report “could mark a new era for the campus community.”

Though I wish that the Daily Cal’s conclusion was correct, the fact is that the OCR’s conclusions are limited only to the legal matter of the university’s liability with regards to the civil rights of minority students. Although the OCR acknowledged the occurrence of hostile acts directed against Jews, they concluded that because there is no law compelling the university to prevent students from being personally offended or hurt, the university made no legal infractions. Indeed, for the OCR to have taken action, they would need evidence that the university had failed to stop direct coordinated actions against Jews.  Given that the issues faced by Jewish students come from a widespread general bias across the entire student body and not from a single organization, the OCR would never find Berkeley to be legally liable, no matter the degree of hostility faced by Jewish students.

However, as any Cal student or alum could likely confirm, Berkeley has chosen to commit itself to principles beyond the law. The university’s well-known dedication to protecting student rights and concern with matters of justice is at the very core of our identity.  These values, even if not made explicit in federal law, explicitly bar the actions that led to the legal complaint filed with the OCR. The report may legally exonerate Cal, but it does not excuse the university, faculty and students from the grave moral failing of our community in dealing with the baseless hatred in our midst.

It is an incontrovertible fact that over the past several years, Jewish students at Berkeley have had to deal with numerous hate incidents, including verbal, written and physical assaults.  Jewish students have been called horrendous, unprintable things. They have been shoved and pushed. In campus housing, the past several years have seen repeated occurrences of swastikas and other anti-Semitic graffiti. Continue reading

The Struggle To Hold Up The Hatred

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The 2013 Edition Of the MSU “Apartheid Wall” On The UCI Campus.

Continue reading

The Wall of Hate Suffers A “Rain Out” This Morning

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The so-called “apartheid wall”,  erected year after year on the UC Irvine Campus by the Muslim Student Union, never looked better or more truthful.

Are you still being told that things have gotten better for Jewish university Students? Have you been fooled!

New intifada on campuses abroad

They meet in small groups on campus; funded by foreign money. They understand that this method of operation gives them more influence than any act of physical violence would. They are young people who convince others; they are builders of public opinion. Step by step they take control of the leaderships of student unions and organizations; pro-Palestinian activists join extreme left-wingers in activism against Israeli elements.

This is the new intifada. You won’t hear about in the next news update; it is not an uprising within Israel’s borders, and it stopped being just about the settlements, occupation and peace treaties a long time ago. It is far away from us; it is influential, exhilarating; it speaks in a new, young language and has one goal: The annihilation of Israel as a Jewish state.

Campus Hatred

The battle for America / Tzipi Shmilovitz

Special: Israeli, Jewish students fighting back as hostility grows on leading campuses in America
Full Story

Anti-Israeli elements have reached the conclusion that burning an Israeli flag does not make for good photos. It is too extreme, too controversial, and too barbaric; it doesn’t do the job anymore; the world has changed. They found that burning the Zionist idea rather than the flag is much more effective.

Over the past few months this campaign has been taken to the next level. At the University of California public university system, at the University of California, San Diego, at Brooklyn College in New York, at Oxford University in Britain and on other campuses there are calls for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel, and activists also disrupt lectures of Israeli representatives – it is all part of a broad campaign to delegitimize Israel.

It is not coincidental that a significant part of the delegitimization campaign against Israel is talking place on campuses. The arena was carefully selected. Campuses have always been fertile ground for exchanging ideas, for activity aimed at fomenting social change and for calls for universal ideals because it is easier to plant the seeds of unruliness in the minds of 18 year olds, who are more open to innovative and revolutionary ideas. Within a decade millions of young, influential people within government, the economy, the arts, culture, the judicial system and research – those who have been inculcated with the anti-Israel idea – may adopt the notion that Israel does not have the right to exist as a Jewish state. ‘Why do the Jews need a state of their own?’ They will wonder. Continue reading

Tonight: Students for “Justice” in Palestine (SJP) at UC Irvine hosting Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) Farce

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Boycott, Divestment, and Sanction = Double Standard, Demonization and Delegitimization*

Remember the Pakistani teenager who was shot in the head by the Taliban for advocating education for young girls? video here.  In November 2012 a 14-year-old Afghan girl was beheaded by two men  for refusing one of the mens marriage-proposal.  According to Amnesty international, This was the 15th deadly attack on a female victim in 2012.

Continue reading

Jewish Students Allegedly Harassed at U C Davis. Must See Video

Courtesy AMCHA Initiative  
Dear Chancellor Katehi,

As you know, we are faculty members at the University of California, who have been investigating and documenting anti-Jewish bigotry on California public university campuses for the last several years.

We are writing to you now to express our serious concern regarding an incident that occurred during a student protest on November 19, 2012, during which UCD students “occupied” an administration building on campus. We believe that numerous violations of state and federal law and university policy may have occurred at the event. To our knowledge, your administration has neither acknowledged nor addressed these violations. Continue reading

Don’t Say We Didn’t Warn You. Anti-Israel and Anti-Semitic Cancer Now Appears On Most University of California Campuses

Jewish at U.C. — the real report, by the students themselves

Thursday, October 18, 2012 | by dan pine– Jewish Weekly

They called Tammuz Dubnov a liar. Right to his face.

The 17-year-old sophomore was standing in U.C. Berkeley’s Sproul Plaza alongside other students defending Israel.

Therefore, reasoned the pro-Palestinian protestors, Dubnov, who was born in Israel, must be a liar. “I stayed calm,” he recalled of the incident last spring. “They don’t actually know what they’re talking about.”

1_coverU.C. Berkeley, like any university, is a bastion of free speech, a testament to the power of the First Amendment and fundamental American values. At the same time, U.C. campuses have long been the sites of verbal attacks against Israel and, occasionally, Jews.

Divestment resolutions, heckling of Israeli speakers, “Israel Apartheid Week,” calls for academic boycotts of Israel and ethnic slurs — as well as an occasional swastika scrawled here or carved there — have become part of university life. Continue reading

California Assembly resolution urges California colleges and universities to fight anti-Semitism

 
By HANNAH DREIER Associated Press

Posted: 08/28/2012 03:03:50 PM PDT August 29, 2012 12:55 AM GMT Updated: 08/28/2012 05:55:45 PM PDT

SACRAMENTO, Calif.—An Assembly resolution urging California colleges and universities to squelch nascent anti-Semitism also encouraged educators to crack down on demonstrations against Israel, angering advocates for Muslim students.

With no debate, lawmakers on Tuesday approved a resolution that encourages university leaders to combat a wide array of anti-Jewish and anti-Israel actions.

“California schools need to recognize that anti-Semitism is still a very real issue on college campuses around the state—it did not disappear with the end of World War II,” said Assemblywoman Linda Halderman, R-Fresno, the resolution’s author.

Most of the incidents of anti-Semitism the resolution cited are related to the Israel-Palestine debate. These include instances of protesters comparing Israeli police to Nazis and urging support for Hamas.

The resolution, which is purely symbolic and does not carry policy implications, also condemns the suggestion that Israel is a “racist” state and that Jews “wield excessive power over American foreign policy.” The resolution characterizes the student campaign to pressure the University of California system to divest from Israel as anti-Semitic, and applauds university leaders’ refusal to consider it. Continue reading

Jewish Michigan college student had his jaw broken and mouth stapled shut in a vicious beating

‘I’ve never heard of anything so horrific,’ says father of MSU student who was brutally attacked

By Tammy Stables Battaglia Detroit Free Press

A 19-year-old Michigan State University student is recovering at home in Oakland County today after surgery overnight for a broken jaw his family says stems from a brutal hate crime. Police, however, said it did not appear to be a hate crime.

Two men at a party early Sunday attacked Zachary Tennen, a journalism sophomore at MSU, after asking whether he was Jewish,his mother and father, Tina and Bruce Tennen, said today.

They raised their arms in a Nazi salute, chanting “Heil Hitler” and then knocked Tennen unconscious, she said. Continue reading

“Politically Correct Anti-Semitism”. Harassment continues at the University Of California

Note: On February 12, 2008, the Orange County Independent Task Force completed a year-long investigation at the University of California, Irvine ( UCI). Over 80 hours of interviews, as well as, documents, written complaints and numerous visits to the campus were used in the compilation of the subsequent Report and Recommendations.  Among the reports findings were that  ” acts of anti-Semitism are real and well documented. Jewish students have been harassed. Hate speech has been unrelenting. For the most part, Jewish organizations in Orange County have been ineffective in dealing with anti-Semitism at UCI.  Therefore, Students with a strong Jewish identity should consider enrolling elsewhere unless and until tangible changes are made.”

 The University administration  rightfully argued that it cannot and will not stifle free speech on campus. However, University leaders have a First Amendment right and a responsibility to identify and denounce hate speakers and hate speech and as it occurs.  In our view University Of California officials, including UC President Mark Yudof, have failed to adequately address anti-semitic hate speech and harassment on it’s campuses. The complete 34 page report can be found at:
http://octaskforce.files.wordpress.com/2008/02/orange-county-task-force-report-on-anti-semitism-at-uci.pdf

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The Following is an article from the San Fransisco Chronicle:

UC report on anti-Semitism draws ire

Nanette Asimov   Updated 10:56 a.m., Thursday, August 9, 2012

Katherine Orr had just started her freshman year at UC Berkeley last August when she was stunned to see five students in military fatigues carrying what looked like rifles and stopping students at Sather Gate.

“They were asking people, ‘Are you Jewish?’ They were trying to be like soldiers interrogating Palestinians along the border,” Orr said. “They were re-enacting what was happening on the West Bank.”

To students who regard Israel as an essential Jewish homeland, this event and others like it that are staged each year on University of California campuses seem hostile, like poorly concealed anti-Semitism – especially when the Israeli flag with its Star of David is paired with a Nazi swastika, says a new report by a UC fact-finding team seeking to understand Jewish students’ experiences.

But to students who oppose Israeli policies and support such sensational protest methods, some recommendations by the team – that UC adopt a definition of anti-Semitism, prohibit hate speech and consider banning campus sponsorship of offensive activities – have become a new subject for protest. Continue reading

Yudof awakens; Speaks out against disruptions and recent anti-Israel hatred at UC Davis and Riverside campuses

octfas2.jpg

It is said that “its better late than never”. The Orange County Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism was copied, this afternoon with a letter from UC President Mark Yudof.  The  accompanying email  stated: “I thought you might be interested in the attached Open Letter to the UC Community.”

In the letter Yudof denounced the repeated disruption of a presentation by Israeli soldiers at UC Davis during which one of the hecklers accused the speakers af being a rapist and a murderer.  At UC Riverside, vandals defaced an Israeli flag displayed by Hillel with the word terrorist scrawled across it.  We applaud President Yudof for finally gathering the courage to speak out against what has been years of harrassment and intimidation of Jewish students on UC campuses. To read the letter, click this link:  http://octaskforce.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/open-letter-3-8-12.pdf

More doubletalk from UC President Mark Yudof….Yudof: “I remain a strong supporter of the Olive tree Initiative”

On June 28 2010 a Letter  signed by OC Task Force and 11 Organizations was went to  to UC President Yudof concerning, among other things, the alarming rise of anti-semitic rhetoric and physical and verbal aggression. In a very public and dismissive response in July 6, 2010 issue of the L A Times , Yudoff called that letter  a “dishearteningly ill-informed rush to judgment…” The following letter, copied to the Orange County Independent Task force on Anti-Semitism, is President Yudofs response to a recent petition from over 5,000 individials expressing  concern over the rising tide of anti-Semitic acts on the UC campuses: (Click) UC President Yudofs response to Jewish Community concerns

SEE ALSO:

Dear University of California President Yudof: Thanks for nothing!

Letter from UC Irvine Student to President Yudof concerning November 4th Presentation

Yudoff: “Whenever one of these vile acts occurs, we will act”… Will the regents continue to “act” like they are doing something or will they actualy do something about it?

“University administrators would do well to read the writing on their campuses’ bathroom walls”

UC Berkeley student:  “I don’t feel safe”

In May 2010 over 63 UC Irvine  faculty members issued a public statement saying in part: “Some community members, students, and faculty indeed feel intimidated, and at times even unsafe.”

Is the American Jewish Committee finally getting it right on campus anti-Semitism?

With any luck, the AJC’s reversal may facilitate a unified  Jewish communal response to the resurgence of anti-Semitic incidents that have  been seen around the country, and especially in California, over the past  decade…”

AJC Gets It Right on Campus Anti-Semitism, At Last

David Harris Stood Behind Moves to Protect Jewish Students
By Kenneth L. Marcus

Published August 23, 2011, issue of September  02, 2011.  Jewish Daily Forward

In early August, the American Jewish Committee’s executive director, David  Harris, finally renounced his organization’s highly controversial joint  statement on campus anti-Semitism.

The initial statement, which AJC anti-Semitism expert Kenneth Stern had  published four months before, with Cary Nelson, president of the American  Association of University Professors, had generated considerable criticism  within the Jewish community. Interestingly, the AJC reversal coincided with  disturbing revelations in the University of California, Berkeley campus  anti-Semitism case.

The context for the AJC statement can be found in California. Jessica Felber  had gotten national attention earlier this year when she filed a federal lawsuit  alleging an anti-Semitic attack at the University of California’s flagship  Berkeley campus. In her federal complaint, the recent graduate detailed how a  Palestinian activist assaulted her on campus by ramming her from behind with a  loaded shopping cart. In mid-August, Felber revealed to the court that this  assault was part of an ugly pattern on that campus.  In another incident, a campus protester stopped a lecture to berate Felber for  the Hebrew lettering on her sweatshirt, yelling that she must be a “terrorist  supporter.” In a third, the head of Berkeley’s Students for Justice in Palestine  allegedly spat at her.

Felber is not alone; a second Berkeley student, Brian Maissy, has now joined  her lawsuit.  Maissy submitted a declaration describing the “terrifying” atmosphere on the Berkeley campus during “Apartheid Week,” when protesters  toting realistic-looking guns taunt passing students, demanding to know, “Are  you Jewish?”  Even more disturbing, Mel Gordon, a senior member of the Berkeley  faculty, is now supporting Felber’s lawsuit with written testimony that he had  been, “savagely beaten and spat upon” by the Students for Justice in Palestine.  Gordon described “serious injuries” that he received from blows to the  stomach. Continue reading

“The singling out of Israel and the Jewish people for treatment that is not accorded any other group is textbook anti-Semitism”

The Reality of Campus Anti-Semitism Revisited

| @tobincommentary 08.19.2011 – 11:01 AM

Back in April, I wrote to take issue with a statement written by Kenneth Stern of the American Jewish Committee and Cary Nelson, the president of the American Association of University Professors. The duo contended that a number of recent troubling incidents involving Jewish students on American college campuses did not rise to the level of a “working definition” of anti-Semitism. Even worse, they sought to dismiss efforts to fight back against the vicious anti-Semitism that masquerades as criticism of Zionism as an unscrupulous attempt at censoring anti-Israel speech.  Their stand undermined the campaign to get the government and universities to take the issue of anti-Semitism seriously. Continue reading

Richard Falk posts “vicious” anti-Semitic image on his blog. Claims ignorance of its repugnant nature “before it was pointed out to me.”

Note: Falk has taught UC Santa Barbara, at Chapman University and has appeared as a speaker at numerous anti-Israel events on Southern California Campuses including UCLA.

Obama administration, Jewish groups, to U.N.: Sack Falk

By Ron Kampeas ·                 July 8, 2011

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Obama administration, joined by U.S. Jewish groups, called for the United Nations to dismiss Richard Falk, its rapporteur on Palestinian rights, after he posted an anti-Semitic cartoon on his blog.

“I am deeply disturbed that once again U.N. Special Rapporteur Richard Falk has used his personal blog to publish abhorrent material,” Joseph Torsella, the U.S. representative for management and reform to the United Nations, said in a statement on Friday. “His shameful and outrageous behavior is an embarrassment to the United Nations. Someone who publishes such vicious images has no place in the U.N. system.”

The cartoon, posted by Falk, depicts a dog wearing a shirt labeled “USA” and a yarmulke marked with a Star of David devouring a bloody human carcass. Lady Justice stands by blindfolded, holding the dog’s leash as it urinates on her foot. Continue reading

Dear University of California President Yudof: Thanks for nothing!

We wish to thank the author for sending a copy of the following article to the Orange County Independent Task Force on Anti-Semitism:

Jewish University Presidents Who Abandon Jews 

By Stella Paul

Since we live in a craven age, let’s salute our few heroes.  Meet Jessica Felber, a 21-year-old Lioness of Judah, who’s suing the University of California for failing to protect her civil rights.

Felber is a student activist at Berkeley who simply asserts her right to stand on campus and hold a sign saying, “Israel Wants Peace,” without subsequently needing urgent medical attention.  What Jew can count on that right on a UC campus these days?

In March 2010, Felber was violently assaulted by Husam Zakharia, the leader of Students for Justice in Palestine, as she peacefully held her sign at a pro-Israel event.  UC authorities “were fully aware that Zakharia, the SJP and similar student groups had been involved in other incidents on campus to incite violence against and intimidate Jewish and other students,” says her renowned lawyer, Neal Sher.  Nevertheless, “[d]efendants took no reasonable steps to protect Ms. Felber and others.”

Felber names UC President Mark Yudof in her lawsuit and therein lies a tale.  Continue reading

Rutgers Hillel fights campus Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism; Gets community involved.

The event caught the attention of Jewish leaders from surrounding communities, and almost 400 people showed up to protest

Rutgers Hillel celebrates successes in combating anti-Israelism on campus

Jacob Binstein, New Jersey Jewish Standard
June 3, 2011 (From IJCR)

It was a tough year for friends of Israel on the Rutgers campus.

But last Tuesday night, at the Rutgers Hillel Gala held in Livingston, student activists got a warm reminder that they don’t stand alone as community leaders from all corners of the state came out to support the 68-year-old campus organization. Continue reading

Sign the Petition to UC President Mark Yudof

Dear Task Force friends,

As a follow-up to last  year’s letter to UC President Mark Yudof, which 12 organizations  — including  your own — signed, my colleague Dr. Leila Beckwith and I have recently posted  another on-line letterto President Yudof, urging him to forcefully and  promptly address the problem of the harassment and intimidation of Jewish students on UC campuses.  We are hoping that thousands of Jewish community members will join us in signing this follow-up letter.

Could you please forward the following to your email subscribers?

Many thanks,
Tammi

Dear Jewish Community of California,

Bigotry against Jewish students has occurred on University of California campuses over many years and on many campuses.  Jewish students have been subjected to: swastikas; acts of physical aggression; speakers, films and exhibits that use anti-Semitic imagery and discourse; speakers that praise and encourage support for terrorist organizations; the organized disruption of events sponsored by Jewish student groups; and most recently the promotion of student senate resolutions for divestment from Israel that seek to demonize and delegitimize the Jewish State.

Last May, more than 700 Jewish UC students signed a petition expressing outrage at anti-Jewish rhetoric and imagery on their campuses.  They asserted that these incidents are as offensive and hurtful to Jewish students as a “Compton cookout” or a noose are to African American students. In addition, dozens of Jewish students from three different UC campuses, who responded to an on-line questionnaire, described feeling harassed and intimidated by the promotion of hatred against the Jewish State and of Jews.  Almost all of the students felt that the administrators on their campuses did not treat Jewish concerns as sensitively as they did the concerns of other minorities such as African Americans and Latinos.

In June 2010, leaders of 12 Jewish organizations, including the Orthodox Union and the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, wrote to UC President Mark Yudof, expressing their concerns about the hostile environment faced by Jewish students on UC campuses, and calling on him to address this serious problem immediately.  President Yudof responded by asking Jewish leaders to have patience and faith in the newly-established Advisory Councils on Campus Climate, Culture, and Inclusion. Over the last year, however, these Advisory Councils have failed to address, or even acknowledge, the problem of anti-Semitism on UC campuses.  In fact, the aims and actions of the Advisory Councils since their inception, as revealed by documents released under a  Freedom of Information request, show that Jewish students are not a focus at all. Continue reading

50 North American University Campus Groups To Counter Israel Apartheid Week


Photo: Reuters

Click here for a list of participating  universities including University of California Campus groups.  Note: U C Irvine is not on this list as of this date.

Israel Peace Week sweeps US campuses

Ynetnews 3-4-11

North American campaign seeks to counter Israel Apartheid Week, present truth about Jewish state

Responding to hate campaign: Pro-Israel students across the United States and Canada have launched a campaign to communicate messages about the Jewish state’s peace efforts, while countering a notorious anti-Israeli initiative, Israel Apartheid Week.

Known as Israel Peace Week, the new campaign is being hosted at nearly 50 North America universities.

The initiative also focuses on existential threats to Israel, and the values and accomplishments of the democratic Jewish state in an otherwise despotic Middle East. The innovative campaign counters an anti-Israel initiative known as Israel Apartheid Week that has been held across university campuses and urban communities since 2005.

Israel Peace Week was conceived of by a group of 5 student leaders Continue reading

Tammi Rossman-Benjamin’s response to Dr. Daniel Wehrenfennig, Director of the UCI Olive Tree Initiative

Dear Dr. Daniel Wehrenfennig,

You did not write to me directly, though you did blind-copy me on your recent widely-circulated letter (forwarded below), in which you mentioned my name 18 times and attacked a letter I had sent to the heads of the Orange County Jewish Federation and Hillel.  My letter urged these Jewish communal organizations to withdraw their funding and promotion of the Olive Tree Initiative (OTI) because at least 15 of the OTI’s speakers are affiliated with organizations that have ties to terrorist groups that have murdered Jews, advocate the elimination of the Jewish state, and support boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaigns against Israel.  I also pointed out to the OC Federation and Hillel that it is wrong for Jewish communal resources to be used for a trip that engages Jewish students in activities that desecrate Jewish holy days, such as the OTI trip in 2010, during which students spent the two days of Rosh Hashanah and the following Sabbath (and other Sabbaths) engaged in non-Jewish activity in Jordan and the disputed territories.

You fiercely criticized my letter, stating that I “made up facts” and that my analysis was “incomplete and misleading,” “completely inaccurate,” and filled with “wrong information and missing facts,” “a pattern of misinformation,” “erroneous statements,” and “distortion.”  I would like to reply to your charges, which I believe are wholly baseless, extremely disingenuous, and highly offense to the Jewish community in general, and to me personally as a UC faculty member, and as a Jew. Continue reading

Enforce Policy on Campus Harassment

Kenneth L. Marcus is the director of The Anti-Semitism Initiative at the Institute for Jewish & Community Research and author of “Jewish Identity and Civil Rights in America,” Cambridge 2010. He also teaches at Baruch College of the City University of New York.)

Op-Ed: U.S. must enforce policy on campus harassment

By Kenneth L. Marcus · December 8, 2010

NEW YORK (JTA) — Buried in the recent policy statement on bullying in the public schools, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights announced a major policy on anti-Semitism: For only the second time in its history, OCR pledged that it would use its civil rights enforcement powers to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment.

The landmark ruling bolsters the 2004 policy that I issued while heading OCR during the first George W. Bush administration but which had been abandoned or ignored in the intervening years. The new policy is a big deal for students on many college campuses, where anti-Semitism has made a startling return. However, it is hardly clear whether OCR will enforce it fully.

The new policy is certainly timely. Some say this is a “golden age” for American Jewish college students, pointing to the proliferation of Hillel houses, Jewish studies departments, Israel studies classes, and Jewish college presidents and faculty. There is some truth to this opinion.

But if it is the best of times, it is also the worst of times. The long steady progress against anti-Semitism since the end of the World War II halted nearly a decade ago at the start of the second intifada. Since then many campuses, especially on the West Coast, have seen a resurgence of anti-Jewish animosity. In many cases we see old school European-style stereotypes of greedy, conspiratorial Jews. Continue reading

Vandals Attack Chabad House, Hillel Center at Indiana University. Holy Texts Desecrated

More attacks hit Jewish targets at Indiana Univ.

December 1, 2010

(JTA) — Three new attacks on Jewish targets at Indiana University, following two earlier incidents, included the desecration of holy texts.

A rock was thrown Tuesday morning through the window of an apartment above the Chabad Jewish student center, located just off the university campus, nearly hitting a student and putting a hole in the opposite wall. Four non-Jewish students live in the Chabad apartment.

Less than an hour later, a rock was thrown at the staff directory glass display case for the Robert A. and Sandra B. Borns Jewish Studies Program, causing damage.

On Monday evening, eight religious volumes in Hebrew removed from shelves at a university library were urinated on in eight different bathrooms in the library area, according to reports. Continue reading

JTA Quotes Task Force Release on MSU Sanctions

Sanctions shortened for Muslim student group

September 8, 2010

SAN FRANCISCO (JTA) — A Muslim student group at the University of California, Irvine, had a yearlong suspension shortened to four months. Continue reading

Anti-Semitism at the OCR?

Kenneth L. Marcus, is the former staff director of the United States Commission on Civil Rights

Kenneth L. Marcus

Commentary Magazine

During the first years of the 21st century, the virus of anti-Semitism was unleashed with a vengeance in Irvine, California. There, on the campus of the University of California at Irvine, Jewish students were physically and verbally harassed, threatened, shoved, stalked, and targeted by rock-throwing groups and individuals. Jewish property was defaced with swastikas, and a Holocaust memorial was vandalized. Signs were posted on campus showing a Star of David dripping with blood. Jews were chastised for arrogance by public speakers whose appearance at the institution was subsidized by the university. They were called “dirty Jew” and “fucking Jew,” told to “go back to Russia” and “burn in hell,” and heard other students and visitors to the campus urge one another to “slaughter the Jews.” One Jewish student who wore a pin bearing the flags of the United States and Israel was told to “take off that pin or we’ll beat your ass.” Another was told, “Jewish students are the plague of mankind” and “Jews should be finished off in the ovens.” Continue reading

UC Irvine: What’s up?

(The  Orange County Independent Task force on anti-Semitism received a copy, this morning,  of the following letter from the organization,  Act! for America:)

Chancellor Michael Drake

University of California, Irvine

Dear Chancellor Drake,

On behalf of ACT! for America, a nationwide issues advocacy organization with over 130,000 members and 425 local chapters, I urge the University of California at Irvine (UCI) to implement its own disciplinary recommendations against the Muslim Student Union (MSU).  It is my understanding you were present the evening the MSU carried out repeated disruptions of the Israeli Ambassador’s address.   Several hundred more witnessed the obviously orchestrated interruptions and tens of thousands more saw it later on the Internet.  The Muslim students continued to chant “Down with Israel” just outside the building after they all left the lecture hall together in another obviously planned disruption.   The MSU and their defenders continue to assert this was all spontaneous. Continue reading

Is Hillels leadership finally willing to acknowledge and deal with campus anti-Semitism?

(Beyond Hooka lounges, belly dancing and souvenir stands?)

Hillel students and professionals gear up to face anti-Israel campus activism

By Sue Fishkoff · August 16, 2010

ST. LOUIS (JTA) — Amanda Boris is nervous about what she’ll face when classes resume at the University of Wisconsin later this month.

“There’s an uncomfortable amount of anti-Semitism on my campus,” said the incoming senior. Continue reading

ZOA: Yudof response to 12 organizations June 28, 2010 letter “dismissive and insulting in tone.”

The  Zionist Organization of America’s July 26, 2010 letter, copied to the  the Governor, U C Board of Regents and members of congress,  also expressed concern that the U. C. advisory council members  “lacked expertise” in confronting and combating anti-Semitism.  The letter also suggests that at least two members are “the wrong choice” .  To read the ZOA letter click here

To read U C President Yudofs response letter to 12 Jewish organizations including the O C Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism click here

See Also:

Letter to UC President Yudof signed by OC Task Force and 11 Organizations

36 Members of Congress July 8th letter to Education Secretary Arne Duncan

The letter expresses concern about the problem of campus anti-Semitism and about whether the Department of Education is enforcing Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment and intimidation. Courtesy of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) To read the letter click here.

UC President Yudofs Letter

(Comments by Tammi Benjamin who co-authored the letter)
As you will see in his letter to us, Yudof goes to great lengths to minimize our concerns about the safety of Jewish students on UC campuses.  He also completely ignores our charge that there is an egregious anti-Jewish double standard among UC administrators and Regents, who, for example, have shown extreme sensitivity and responsiveness to the emotional distress that a Compton Cookout or noose might cause African American students,  but have virtually ignored the long-standing and intolerable harassment and intimidation of Jewish students through anti-Semitic graffiti, numerous speakers and events on many UC campuses that demonize Jews and support terrorism against Israel, divestment campaigns, etc.

Please feel free to write to one of the following in support of our Letter and the 12 courageous Jewish organizations that signed it:

UC President Mark Yudof: President@ucop.edu
LA Times: letters@latimes.com (Word limit 150)

To read U C President Yudofs response letter to 12 Jewish organizations including the O C Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism  click here

Yudof: Letter from 12 Jewish Organizations concerning campus anti-Semitism “dishearteningly ill-informed rush to judgment…”–L A Times

UC president in unusual public dispute with several American Jewish groups

The president of the University of California and leaders of some prominent American Jewish organizations are in an unusual public dispute about the extent of anti-Semitism on UC campuses and the best ways to try to reduce it.

A dozen Jewish and pro-Israel groups, including the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the national headquarters of both Conservative and Orthodox Judaism, sent a letter to UC President Mark G. Yudof last week that contends the university’s response to anti-Semitic acts has been too weak. Continue reading

Congressman Klein’s letter: Congressional meeting addresses “anti-Semitic and anti-Israel harassment against students”

The following was emailed to the OCITF this morning from Congressman Klein’s office

Dear friends,

Earlier this week, I invited several speakers to come to Capitol Hill to brief Congressional offices on reports of anti-Semitic and anti-Israel harassment against students on college campuses in the United States, an unacceptable and alarming problem that persists in various regions of the country. According to Jewish community officials, students at various universities around the country have reported repeated intimidation, harassment and even violent attacks on their college campuses by other students and non-students alike, causing emotional distress and prompting some students to go so far as to transfer schools. Continue reading

UC Berkeley Professor: “All anyone has to do is go into one of the bathrooms in Berkeley,” he said. “There are swastikas everywhere

Demonstrators on Upper Sproul Protest Drawings of Swastikas

By Katrina Escudero

Contributing Writer  Daily Cal.  Monday, May 3, 2010

In a response to the three swastikas recently drawn at the Clark Kerr Campus, approximately 45 protesters demonstrated on Upper Sproul Plaza Friday afternoon, addressing issues of anti-Semitism and calling for the end of “hidden hatred” at UC Berkeley. Continue reading

“The silence is deafening”

Will the UC Irvine Muslim Student Union ever defend itself?

LA Middle Eastern Policy Examiner Paul Kujawsky   April 16,

It’s been more than a week since the Investigative Project on Terrorism revealed emails that, if authentic, show that the UC Irvine branch of the Muslim Student Union coordinated the disruption of the February campus speech of Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Oren. The emails also show that the MSU coordinated the subsequent cover-up, in which both the MSU and the arrested demonstrators denied any MSU involvement in the planning or execution of the demonstration. (See “More evidence that UC Irvine MSU lied about not planning disruption of Israeli Ambassador’s talk.“) Continue reading

“It’s only an hour away,”

Pointing to UCLA, which recently inaugurated an Israeli studies program “to educate people about the Middle East in a fair and balanced way,” (UC Regent) Lansing urged Drake to visit the Los Angeles school and learn about the program.”

U. of Calif. addresses campus hate, but some draw line on Oren incident

By Sue Fishkoff · March 25, 2010

(JTA) The University of California announced a series of measures designed to prevent hate violence and racism on campus, but some speakers at a meeting devoted to the violence said the recent heckling of Israel’s ambassador at UC Irvine, which resulted in 11 arrests, was a display of free speech, not a hate crime. Read more »

ZOA, 12 major Jewish Organizations letter the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education: Protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act

(Courtesy of the ZOA)

American Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists
American Jewish Committee
American Jewish Congress
Anti-Defamation League
B’nai B’rith International
Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life
Institute for Jewish and Community Research
Jewish Council for Public Affairs
Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America
Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
Scholars for Peace in the Middle East
Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America
Zionist Organization of America

March 16, 2010

The Hon. Arne Duncan
Secretary
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20202-1510

Re: Protecting Jewish Students Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Dear Mr. Secretary:

In your thoughtful speech last week in Selma, Alabama, commemorating the 45th anniversary of the “Bloody Sunday” confrontation between law-enforcement officials and civil-rights marchers, you appropriately emphasized both the important mission of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the critical nature of the work of the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR). We write to urge you to ensure that, in furtherance of that critical work, OCR interprets Title VI to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic harassment, intimidation and discrimination.

To read the entire letter click   Here

“York University event cancelled due to the participation of individuals they claim invite the animus of anti-Israel campus agitators.”

(Courtesy of Tammi  Benjamin)

York University discriminates against Christian and Jewish coalition ahead of Israel Apartheid Week

Written by –
Wednesday, 24 February 2010

TORONTO – At the last minute, York University has cancelled events organized by a coalition of Canadian pro-Israel students and organizations due to “security” concerns. The events organized by the Imagine With Us coalition were scheduled for this week in anticipation of Israel Apartheid Week (IAW), which begins on March 1. Continue reading

JTA: Incitement to Genocide? Heckler shouts “slaughter the Jews” at Oxford University Speech by Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister

Ayalon may press charges against heckler

February 10, 2010

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel’s deputy foreign minister may press charges against a student who shouted “slaughter the Jews” during his speech at Oxford University. Continue reading

“Criticism is not censorship, Leadership requires courage”; SF State President Corrigan speaks out against anti-Israel boycott

Kudos to S.F. State president for stand on anti-Israel speech

Thursday, November 12, 2009 | by Susan Wolfe

Calls to boycott Israeli academics, divest from companies doing business in Israel, and impose economic sanctions against Israel are the latest tricks of the anti-Israel trade that have taken hold on college campuses the world over.

In the United Kingdom, Britain’s University and College Union has debated four times in the last four years whether to impose a boycott to prevent Israeli scholars from participating in conferences, research efforts and other academic endeavors with their peers from around the world. Thus far, the effort has not succeeded, yet year after year it appears on the agenda.

Two years ago, the divest-from-Israel campaign at Stanford University failed, but there are rumblings of new efforts afoot to try to convince Stanford’s board of trustees to cease business dealings and investment in companies working with and in Israel.

Each spring at U.C. Irvine, the Muslim Student Union stages a weeklong series of anti-Israel events. Calls for boycotts, divestment and sanctions are routine. Affronts have become so offensive that earlier this year the Orange County Independent Task Force on Anti-Semitism on Campus issued this startling recommendation: “Students with a strong Jewish identity should consider enrolling elsewhere unless and until tangible changes are made.”

The report concluded that anti-Semitism is thriving at U.C. Irvine because “the chancellor has failed to exercise his moral authority as an educator and leader by abrogating his leadership responsibilities.”

A few weeks ago, the Bay Area Jewish community learned that a student group at San Francisco State University planned to host Omar Barghouti, founder of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, for a Nov. 3 lecture. In a bold demonstration of leadership, S.F. State President Robert Corrigan did not stand idly by. Continue reading

Hate Speech: “Difficult to define precisely”?

In contrast to the comments in the previous post:

” …Hate speech is difficult to define precisely.” It is largely defined by the person individual hearing it: what some or many might find hateful or offensive, others may not….” UCI Chancellor Michael Drake ” Message on hate speech” May 26.2006.

“..One persons hate speech is another persons education” — UCI Vice Chancellor Manuel Gomez October 18, 2006.

“We have 1,000 guest speakers on campus every year. Could I evaluate them and say this one is anti-Semitic? I could not. What I could say is that as a person and a campus, we abhor hate speech, period.” — UCI Chancellor Michael Drake May 30, 2007.

“…I do agree there were certainly instances of boorish and intimidating behavior.  Some of this behavior involved people not associated with the University.  Neither the University nor the Police Department has the means or ability to control such rude or obnoxious behavior…” UC Irvine Police Chief Paul Henisey—January 20, 2009

“…UC Irvine did experience instances of racist, hateful and anti-Semitic speech on our campus last month.   The Chancellor has stated on many occasions that he personally finds this type of speech abhorrent, offensive and counterproductive…” Ramona H. Agrela, UCI Associate Chancellor–June 12, 2009


A “Fundamental Breach of Civility”

These excerpts are from an article published on December 11, 2006, by then Johns Hopkins President William Brody

Important words:

By William R. Brody

A Civil Tongue

It is time to talk about freedom of speech.

“Recent events on the Homewood campus have provoked allegations that the university is not sufficiently protecting the free expression of ideas among our students. In particular, the outcry and controversy surrounding a racially demeaning invitation to a fraternity party, and the resulting sanctions imposed by the Student Conduct Board (which are currently on appeal), are being construed as an attempt by the university to prohibit speech it doesn’t particularly want to hear.

I disagree….”

“…. What I see here is not a courageous trespass of taboo speech but rather a fundamental breach of civility of the sort that is so commonly displayed in disparagement, mockery or epithets drawn along racial or ethnic lines. It is, simply put, common name-calling. This is what I believe we should agree is unacceptable in our community of free and open discourse. Let us not forget that true civility is not a program of fair treatment for this or that constituency but rather an underlying and fundamental commitment to showing respect for everybody…”

“…To any who doubt the consequence of teaching respect and civility, or who claim we are out of line in demanding that all members of our community comport themselves honorably in their dealings with others, I say this: Look around you. Look at the world we live in, where so many societies are literally falling apart because group A would rather encounter death and destruction than show basic human respect for group B. These are not trivial matters. Let us never underestimate the value of civility, not just to protect people’s feelings but to preserve the possibility of freedom itself…The Johns Hopkins University Gazette


Once upon a time….

Once upon a time in a far away land a there was University Administration with the character to stand up to racism and hatred on its campus; And while this is a very olde tale indeed, its message still resonates today……..

This events described in the press release below  are very serious. They occurred in October 2006.  It is important  to note this because it  illustrates unequivocal and decisive action taken by Johns Hopkins University in the wake of what was described as “racist” fraternity party.  It also emphasizes the that this institution actually enforces its rules and regulations and protects it’s students, faculty and others:  

University Statement on Investigation of Fraternity

On Saturday evening, Oct. 28, at an off-campus house, members of the Sigma Chi fraternity sponsored a party that was advertised as a “Halloween in the ‘Hood” party. The invitation invoked offensive racial stereotyping. The coordinator of Greek life last week had told the chapter president that he found the advertisement racist and offensive and directed the fraternity to withdraw the advertising immediately. The advertising later reappeared, without the coordinator’s knowledge, in altered but still offensive form.

A decoration outside the party site was a plastic skeleton dressed in pirate garb hanging from a rope noose.

The university’s community liaison officer was asked early Sunday to respond to the scene of the party. After she did so, a decision was made to close the event down.

The university is now conducting a full investigation into this matter. Based on the information received thus far, the university has suspended all activities of the Sigma Chi fraternity, pending the results of the investigation. The university has also alerted the fraternity’s national headquarters about this action. The national fraternity has imposed a 45-day suspension of the chapter’s activities and will conduct its own investigation.

The university will be investigating whether the Sigma Chi fraternity chapter or any of its members violated university policies and regulations proscribing:

  • conduct or a pattern of conduct that harasses a person or a group;
  • intimidation of any person which results in limiting her/his full access to all aspects of life at the university;
  • and hosting an event in violation of university party registration policies Continue reading

Student discusses how the college campus has become a hub of anti-semitism

Anti-Semitism on Campus—An Easy Target

Student David Elmaleh discusses how the college campus has become a hub of anti-semitism

image
Shouting, anti-religious slurs, evil glares and anti-Semitic rhetoric often get thrown my way as I walk through the halls during one of the countless anti-Israel demonstrations at York University. Am I a walking target? I often wonder if I am drawing a bull’s eye for myself when I dress in a way that identifies me as a Jew on campus. Indeed, the distinction between anti-Zionist and anti-Jewish is becoming increasingly blurred.

In several cases, these rallies have deteriorated into soapboxes for Jew bashing. I have been called names and been insulted for simply wearing my kippah. One day, while hurrying to a class, a few individuals stopped me in the hallway and began berating me about Israeli policies.

The campus newspaper has not been very helpful; it consistently presents editorials and articles that blast Israel, while very few pro-Israel pieces make it into the paper. Last year, after the fatal terrorist attack at the Mercaz HaRav yeshivah in Jerusalem, a York student wrote an op-ed for the campus paper entitled “Jewish Attack Not a Surprise,” which defended the massacre and called on continued resistance in order to end the occupation in Gaza. Jewish students of all walks of life felt outraged and hurt that their paper had printed such a hate-inspired editorial. It sparked intense debate among all factions of students, and, as usual, Jews were targeted.

Below is my response to the op-ed. Continue reading

Canadian Government Invests in National Task Force Against anti-Semitism

Ottawa pledges $1M for anti-Semitism task force

TORONTO — The Canadian government, in partnership with B’nai Brith Canada, will invest nearly $1 million on a national task force to combat anti-Semitism, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney said last week…..

 ….Frank Dimant, B’nai Brith Canada’s executive vice-president, spoke of the verbal and physical attacks perpetrated against Jewish and pro-Zionist students at university campuses across Canada over the past year.  “It seems unthinkable, he mused, that in this day and age, “Canadian universities would be the hotbed of anti-Semitism, disguised as anti-Zionism.”… read it here

OC Task Force Applauds OC ADL’s May 14, 2009 letter to UCI Chancellor Drake

The Orange County Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism applauds  ADL Regional Director Kevin O’Grady for taking a firm stand against anti-Semitic and racist hatred at UC Irvine:

“….We firmly believe that your unwillingness to specifically condemn the anti-Semitic comments that were spewed on your campus last year in conjunction with MSU’s activities sent a signal that they were acceptable and led to the escalation of hate this year. In such circumstances, it is your responsibility as Chancellor to exercise your own First Amendment rights and use your bully pulpit to denounce Amir Abdul Malik Ali by name, to remove the offensive display from the entrance of your campus and to restore the integrity of U.C. Irvine as a place that promotes a civil, respectful and welcoming academic environment. There is no legitimate excuse for inaction now – enough is enough!…” Read the letter here:

A newer low is achieved: Mocking Anne Franks Memory

Chancellor Michael Drake has a Constitutional right and the moral duty to unequivocally and unambiguously, speak out against the hatred on his campus. He has not.

Ann1Ann3ann5ann6

Note:   The offensive Anne Frank picture was eventually covered with a scarf. Thanks to the OC Task Force Executive Vice President Robert Winer M.D..

Advertisement for hate? Shame on UC Irvine!!

Photos Taken May 6, 2009 Campus at West PeltasonOC Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism (all rights reserved)

msupresents

israel

Photos Taken May 6, 2009 Campus at West PeltasonOC Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism (all rights reserved)

ACCORDING TO THE CALIFORNIA EDUCATION CODE SECTION 92000-92001:

“92000. (a) The name “University of California” is the property of the state. No person shall, without the permission of the Regents of the University of California, use this name, or any abbreviation of it or any name of which these words are a part, in any of the following ways:

(1) To designate any business, social, political, religious, or other organization, including, but not limited to, any corporation, firm, partnership, association, group, activity, or enterprise.

(2) To imply, indicate or otherwise suggest that any such organization, or any product or service of such organization is connected or affiliated with, or is endorsed, favored, or supported by, or is opposed by the University of California.

(3) To display, advertise, or announce this name publicly at, or in connection with, any meeting, assembly, or demonstration, or any propaganda, advertising, or promotional activity of any kind which has for its purpose or any part of its purpose the support, endorsement, advancement, opposition, or defeat of any strike, lockout, or boycott or of any political, religious, sociological, or economic movement, activity, or program…..”

Special thanks to OC Task Force advisory member Gary Fouse.


Congressional Task Force introduces legislation condemning anti-Semitism

Congressman Ron Klein (D-FL) and Congressman Mike Pence (R-IN), the co-chairs of the bipartisan Congressional Task Force Against Anti-Semitism have  introduced legislation condemning rising trends in anti-Semitic activity in the United States and abroad.  The O.C. Independent Task Force has communicated its concerns to the members of the Congressional Task Force as well as to local Members of Congress.

Contact Co-Chairs Klein, Pence and members of the bi-partisan Congressional Task Force against anti-Semitism and express your support for the resolution and concern about rising anti-Semitism on campus:

Representitive Mike Pence (R-IN)

1431 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
(p) 202 225-3021
(f) 202 225-3382

Representitive Ron Klein (D-FL)

313 Cannon House Office Bldg.
Washington, D.C. 20515
p: (202) 225.3026
f: (202) 225.8398
Toll Free #: (866) 713.7303

Last year Congressman Brad Sherman (D -CA) wrote to UC Irvine Chancellor Michael Drake  chancellor@uci.edu expressing his concern about event(s) that “appears  to have intended to encourage violence against the State of Israel and propagate the spread of anti-Semitism.”

read it here

Congressman Sherman can be reached at:

2242 Rayburn Building
Washington, D.C.
20515-0524
(202) 225-5911 tel
(202) 225-5879 fax

5000 Van Nuys Blvd.
Suite 420
Sherman Oaks, CA
91403
(818) 501-9200 tel
(818) 501-1554 fax

NYU nixes disguised anti-Israel “because of its fraudulent nature”

NYU nixes disguised anti-Israel event April 28, 2009

NEW YORK (JTA) — New York University canceled an anti-Israel event disguised as an event about climate change. The event, originally slated for May 4, was titled “The Hidden History of Zionism: The Road to Gaza’s Killing Fields,” and its organizers promoted it with flyers around the campus that some decried as anti-Semitic, Ynet reported. University officials confirmed the cancellation of the event but stressed it was because of its fraudulent nature.

Jews everywhere are unprepared to fight anti-Semitism

By Avrum Rosensweig

I have always felt that decency will prevail and that anti-Semitism, racism and hatred wherever they stand will ultimately be contained.

This is the Jewish way. I have faith that evil will eventually scatter and run, and goodness and tolerance will prevail. I have not been shaken from these beliefs, but I am shaken. Continue reading

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