Baker Academic

Friday, November 30, 2012

Hate Crime at Northeastern University - Le Donne

I just got word of the repulsive news reproduced below. I must say, however, that it is a very old story with new chapters every year. Worse, it happens everywhere. When I was 22, I lived at the Hillel House on the UC Davis campus. UC Davis is a bastion for enlightened, affluent, peace-loving bicyclists  (or this is how they like to think of themselves). The Hillel House just happened to be renting a room and I happened to need a room.  The house itself had once been owned by a few band members of the Grateful Dead (you get the idea).  ...more...
It was a really fun time in my life.  My housemates were varying degrees of kosher, varying degrees of traditional, all good guys.  I have very fond memories of that place.... two years ago that house was vandalized and a swastika was spray-painted on the exterior wall.  It happens everywhere; even in so-called "enlightened" places.

Statement by Americans for Peace and Tolerance on this morning's anti-Jewish hate crime at Northeastern University

November 30, 2012 - 2:30pm

Early this morning, the Jewish Chanukah Menorah at Northeastern University was desecrated, for the third time in three years.

President Joseph Aoun again condemned this continuing hate crime in abstract terms - citing the university's values of tolerance and diversity. As with the other anti-Jewish incidents on campus, he did not specifically identify its victims - Jews, or Judaism - and he did not make mention of anti-Semitism as a motive, or a problem on campus.

Recently, NEU has been at the center of controversies over the anti-Israel and anti-Jewish bias exhibited by members of its staff, including tenured faculty and the campus Muslim chaplain. In response to a series of APT videos that documented this bias and hostility, (, the University dismissed three NEU staffers, including Imam Abdullah Faaruuq, the Muslim chaplain.

The University administration, however, has chosen to remain silent about the reasons for these staff changes, preferring to avoid admitting the problem of anti-Jewish bias. Indeed, President Aoun's abstract and general statement this morning exemplifies the administration's refusal to clearly state that anti-Semitism is a problem at his school.

Northeastern's president, its board, and their lawyers have been provided with full documentation of the biased anti-Jewish behavior of its professors and staffers. They understand this is a problem -- indeed, they dismissed three staff members because of this problem. However, their refusal to openly and honestly deal with anti-Jewish bias on campus permits, and might even encourage, the continuation of a hostile learning environment for Jewish students at NEU.

Therefore, we urge Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick to launch an investigation by the Massachusetts Civil Rights Commission and we appeal to Attorney General Eric Holder to have the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division investigate these matters.

It also has become quite clear that the leaders of the Jewish community need to abandon their approach of maintaining a public silence about anti-Semitism at Northeastern. The current strategy of quiet behind the scenes meetings with President Aoun has clearly failed.

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