Relentless Anti-Semitism Spreads Across College Campuses

News Image By Sarah Holliday/Washington Stand April 24, 2024
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Imagine walking on your college campus, or the campus your son or daughter attends, and being met with mobs of angry, violent people shouting pro-terror chants. Imagine being threatened with murder and faced with vehement hatred simply for existing or being against terrorism. In a sense, you don't have to imagine it completely because these absurdities are exactly what's increasingly unfolding at universities.

Over the weekend, numerous videos surfaced of anti-Israel groups chanting obscenities. At Columbia University, for example, protestors were yelling, "Oh Al-Qassam Brigades, You Make Us Proud, Kill Another Soldier Now! Israel Will Fall! Palestine Is Arab!" and "We are all Hamas" as well as other cries encouraging the obliteration of Israel. 

Some of the protestors even went as far as calling for the murder of the counter-protestors carrying American and Israeli flags. After some were arrested, including Rep. Ilhan Omar's (D-Minn.) daughter, the "campus chaos" continued.

According to National Review, "Columbia University announced on Sunday that, in response to 'extraordinarily challenging circumstances,' it more than doubled its safety personnel per shift, enhanced perimeter safety, improved ID checks for entering campus, and added additional safety measures to the Kraft Center for Jewish Life." 

Classes were also moved to an online format to better separate students from the danger on campus. And the university President Minouche Shafik spoke out against Saturday's protest in a statement, "Anti-Semitic language, like any other language that is used to hurt and frighten people, is unacceptable and appropriate action will be taken."

Those who watch the videos of the police action to remove the protests will be struck by both their restraint and professionalism, as well as by the vicious nature of the students, who were angered by the decision of the university to rein them in. The spectacle of entitled Ivy League students--many of whom come from privileged backgrounds--venting their contempt and calling police officers, who generally come from the working class, "pigs," as well as expressing hatred for America itself, is as shocking as it is illustrative of the divisions in contemporary society.

Other videos from that day's actions shared on X by witnesses were equally appalling as they recorded for posterity the way Columbia students--many of them wearing masks to conceal their identity for the same reason that members of the Ku Klux Klan wore white hoods--chanted their support for Hamas and their intolerance for the presence of "Zionists" on campus and said that they looked forward to more Oct. 7 massacres of Jews. 

Indeed, nothing could better illustrate how critical race theory and intersectionality, which falsely label Jews and Israel as "white" oppressors, grant a permission slip for the kind of open hatred that was long thought to be confined to the margins of American life where only right-wing extremists dwell.

However, a closer look at what else occurred over the weekend proves Columbia is not the only prestigious school that saw such severe anti-Semitism break out.

On Saturday, roughly 500 protestors gathered at Yale University in the Beinecke Plaza calling for more violence while tearing down American flags. Allegedly, one Jewish student, Sahar Tartak, who was covering the protest as editor-in-chief of the Yale Free Press, was struck in the eye with a flagpole by a pro-Palestine protestor. She and her friends were singled out for their Hasidic Jewish clothes. According to Tartak, the university police and administration didn't do anything to stop these events.

As historian Niall Ferguson has written in his seminal Free Press essay, "The Treason of the Intellectuals," what is happening on American campuses today is a frightening replay of what was going on in European universities in the 1920s and '30s. Just like a century ago, the intellectual fashion of the day has made the Jews the scapegoats for everything the educated and credentialed classes don't like.

Now a new poll shows 33% of Gen Zers, those ages 18 to 24, say that Israel does not have a right to exist as a nation in the Middle East., in partnership with RMG Research, founded by Scott Rasmussen, released the new poll results this week.

"We are now seeing the logical outcome of an education system that teaches students to see the world through a lens of racialist resentment. Gen Z is so embarrassed about being American that a large swath of them have become terrorist sympathizers," explained Summit chief Jeff Myers.

"Gen Z is three times as likely as the general population to deny Israel's right to exist. Sympathy for Hamas has grown. This should be a massive wake-up call to parents, educators, and cultural leaders - we now have a generation primed to accept without question the propaganda of those who wish to overturn Judeo-Christian civilization." 

Scenes like these have been playing out all over the country where pre-planned pro-Hamas demonstrations, featuring masked thugs spouting propaganda about Jews committing genocide and shouting their support for Hamas as they blocked key highways, bridges, tunnels and transportation hubs.

Thankfully, many bystanders are calling out the madness for what it is. One user on X posted, "Absolutely disgusting. If this was being done against any other people it would be global news." Another wrote, "Someone needs to explain to me how this is even allowed."

Even former Ohio State quarterback Cardale Jones shared his condemnation of the anti-Semitism. In response to a smaller protest that broke out at his alma mater, the quarterback lamented in a post on X, "Never understood how someone or a group of people could have so much hate towards another. I hope behaviors & actions as such is addressed accordingly & allow EVERYONE to a Buckeye peaceful, proudly and SAFELY." He emphasized, "This isn't THE Ohio State University I attended."

Several higher education institutions are not in a good place, and that leaves these universities with a choice to make: to continue feeding the strife or stop and reevaluate. Colleges like Columbia, Yale, and Harvard are increasingly producing students that publicly promote outright savagery against disfavored minority groups and engage in violence. We all have the right to free speech, but when that right is abused and used to justify the violence we're seeing in these anti-Semitic protests, elite universities must stand up and draw the line.

The question posed by the user on X is worth probing. Namely, why is this being allowed in the first place? In comments to The Washington Stand, Family Research Council's Senior Fellow for Education Studies Meg Kilgannon stated, "College campuses in America have become 'global' environments isolated from common sense, where people with a progressive worldview make and enforce the rules that students, faculty, and staff live out."

She continued, "When that is coupled with a population of foreign students who pay full sticker price coming to the U.S. from countries which are at best hostile to the United States, the stage is set for very volatile escalation." What we're seeing, she added, is that "students are graduating from public high schools across the country where love for God, family, and country is undermined." These same students then "matriculate to colleges and universities who accelerate that anti-American trend."

So, why do universities stand by and allow these protests? According to Kilgannon, it's "because they themselves will face significant backlash directed toward the university rather than the cause of the day generating the protest." But then another question arises: How should believers respond to this madness?

For the church, who is called to expose evil and stand for what is good, Kilgannon insisted, "Christians need to stop writing checks to these colleges and universities, stop recruiting these students into your businesses, and stop aspiring to get degrees from these institutions. Ground your children in the faith."

Originally published at The Washington Stand

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