Another brilliant essay from Tzofar, at the Tundra Tabloids
Bigotry Comes in all Colors—Especially in Academia
“Anti-Zionist” rhetoric in educational institutions is escalating at an alarming pace. When confronted, some anti-Israel, pro-BDS activists take pains to say they are anti-Israel but not anti-Semitic. In reality many have dropped any pretense of civility in their online postings and correspondence. The response by college administrators has been to blather and do nothing, especially when the proponents are from “acceptable” minorities.
Caroline Glick’s column this week called for Israeli and Jewish leadership to take a stand against BDS—without mincing words and apologizing. She cited two cases currently spiking media attention. One involves a couple who pulled their kids out of a Jewish day school because of a self-hating, BDS-slanted classroom environment. In a fit of punitive retribution, the school sued for the entire balance of the upcoming year’s tuition.
Glick doesn’t point this out, but this story was reported by philosophy lecturer Andrew Pessin. Pessin is now on extended sabbatical from Connecticut College. A popular smear campaign by a Muslim student resulted in an award for the student from the director of “institutional equity and inclusion”, while Pessin got months of death threats. The college administration has shown a total lack of spine in this case. We’ll look at why later.
In the second case, über-liberal Oberlin College, linked to the proud history the Underground Railway which smuggled slaves to freedom, is now another certifiably anti-Semitic hotbed. Historically, a religious sense of justice and morality were the driving forces in Oberlin; now anti-Semitic intolerance and insult are the stock and trade of students and faculty. Delegitimizing the kosher co-op, and a hostile BDS protest on Rosh HaShanah, are just two slaps Jews were served there.
Tower Magazine reported another Oberlin BDS issue, the failure to fire or discipline Joy Kanega, a lecturer who posts anti-Semitic propaganda on her Facebook page. According to Kanega, Jews and Zionists were responsible for 9/11, the Charlie Hebdo massacre, and more—while dominating the world by controlling world banking, a lie à la Protocols of the Elders of Zion or Islamist hate preaching.
The Oberlin administration has distanced itself from her remarks while leftist students are demanding she gets tenure. Kanega warned Oberlin that if she is fired, that would be the kind of thing racist institutions do to young black women who are starting their careers. Get it? Intersectionality again. Every member of a “correct” minority is above criticism, even if others are hurt in the process. Pointing out a black woman’s bigotry is as “racist” as pointing out that Muslim men kill women for adultery.
At Ben Shapiro’s lecture on the “diversity” myth, members of the Black Student Union menaced a student who was videoing their protest. A mob of BDS students blocked the lecture hall entrance. Would-be attendees tiptoed in a back door under police escort. Police assessed that Shapiro was in danger of bodily harm from the mob. Shapiro had to be smuggled out of the building—in his own “underground” exit.
Young blacks repeat anti-Semitic BDS memes, just as Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan has made a career out bigotry and blame, including frank Jew-hatred. It is easier to blame than to achieve. Just yesterday Farrakhan praised Donald Trump for not taking “Jewish influence” money.
Once upon a time, the Rev. Martin Luther King hoped for a time “when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”. Rev. King inspired Americans to achieve. In the same hope, Jews marched in the South with the Civil Rights Movement out of a deep conviction that everyone deserved to strive and succeed, without prejudice.
Positive messaging is sorely lacking today.
Today, BDS is a cause adopted not only by Muslims, but by ersatz liberals, including black studies professors such as the Connecticut College equality and diversity director, David Canton. Canton gave an award to the “brown” Muslim student who smeared “white” Andrew Pessin. Then Pessin received death threats from “anti-racists”. Once the thought police stick a color label on someone, all counter arguments become “hate speech”. It is superfluous to point out that all students are ill-served when they spend four years ingesting this kind of tripe. On exit they get smacked with the real world, college loan debt, and not a lot of job prospects.
Academic administrations are so scared of losing their credentials as liberals that they cower and do nothing to push back against the bigoted anti-Semitic wave that is washing across college campuses. The same is true of pro-BDS liberal Jews. They are self-haters who aspire to acceptance by bashing fellow Jews and feeling self-righteous about it. The tidal wave will spare neither the liberal academics nor the Jews, unless they find courage, as King did.