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Ending Jew Hatred at CUNY

On June 30 (next Thursday), the New York City Council is holding a hearing entitled “Examining Antisemitism on College Campuses.”

The hearing comes on the heels of the CUNY Law School faculty’s recent endorsement of a student resolution that is nothing short of discriminatory, and an appalling disregard of the civil rights of Jews.

The City Council is under attack from Jew-haters committed to canceling this important hearing. End Jew Hatred will be there, and we invite you to join us to help make sure our voices are heard!

Courage to act against Jew-hatred is in short supply these days. When we see it, we need to encourage it. We need to support it and nurture it. So we need to acknowledge Council Members Dinowitz and Vernikov and thank them for their courage to hold these hearings on June 30, despite the tremendous pressure they’re under from Jew-haters to cancel them

Don’t let Jew-haters silence our voices! The City Council needs to learn the truth about the hate and violence targeting Jews on campus in order to take action to end it.

Important Background:

The hearing on June 30 comes on the heels of the CUNY Law School faculty’s recent endorsement of a student resolution that is nothing short of discriminatory, and an appalling disregard of the civil rights of Jews. CUNY campuses have seen Jew-hatred flourish for years, with antisemitic fliers, meetings scheduled on the Sabbath, a hostile campus environment, and concerted efforts to erase Jewish identity by denying our religious, ethnic, cultural, and historic connections to our indigenous homeland.

  • When a student filmed herself apparently threatening to set a man’s IDF sweatshirt on fire - while he was wearing it - the administration initially condemned this act, only to later apologize, saying the condemnation was “inexcusable.” The administration apologized for condemning Jew-hatred.

  • When students hold rallies in the streets of New York City demanding to “globalize the Intifada” - to globalize violence against Jews - the administration does nothing.

  • When students call for resistance “by any means,” the administration does nothing.

  • Chants of ‘From the River to the Sea,’ the rallying cry of a designated foreign terrorist organization responsible for horrific attacks on innoncent civilians, is met with silence from the CUNY administration, while a professor who represents JVP says, “I can be sympathetic with the people who commit [violent acts].”

Against this tide of hatred, Jews feel unsafe. Jews are unsafe.

In the words of a Jewish student at CUNY, who asked not to be identified out of fear of retribution, “It’s really setting a precedent that CUNY is OK with having people in their school who are out to hurt us. According to this student, Jews on campus are afraid to wear “anything that would show that they’re Jewish,” such as a kippah or Star of David. “They’re afraid of the repercussions from people on campus…People on campus might actually hurt them.” Jew-hatred has become so ingrained that CUNY’s administrators shrug their shoulders, tacitly accepting that this is normal. But it isn’t. No one should live in fear. For the Jewish community, safety isn’t just about security. Yes, increased security provides some peace of mind, especially after violent attacks, including against our houses of worship. But this is not enough. For the Jewish community, safety is about liberation - liberation from systemic bigotry that has taken hold in our society, and in our schools. The struggle for liberation is something the Jewish people know very well. We have fought against discrimination and bigotry in all its forms, participated in virtually every civil rights effort in the American experience, and demanded the equal rights of every member of society. Now, we demand the recognition of our civil rights - rights that CUNY Law School faculty seems to believe we are not entitled to. We demand the same respect for our indigenous rights as is given to every other peoples. We demand the same commitment to social justice for the Jewish people that we have worked to advance for every other minority. We cannot have an open, diverse, and inclusive society until “liberty and justice for all” applies as much to the Jewish people as to everyone else. We cannot have a just society until Jew-hatred is eradicated. Our struggle is not political; it is about the fundamental values of fairness and equality that we all share. We commend the members of the New York City Council - on all sides of the political spectrum - who have the courage take the first step of probing antisemitism on our college campuses. We cannot achieve meaningful change without shining a light on the hatred that runs so deep at CUNY. And we cannot achieve this change without the courage to act. Join us, and together, we will #EndJewHatred in our lifetime.

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