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2016 Resolution: Anti-Semitic Intimidation on North American College and University Campuses

Whereas in 2014, the last period for which figures have been released by the FBI, Jews were the objects of 57 percent of hate crimes against religious groups: and,

Whereas the rise and spread of anti-Israel agitation, particularly on college campuses, is the most common cause for these hate crimes; and,

Whereas such agitation includes defamatory graffiti, Boycott, Sanction, and Divestment (BDS) rallies, “Israel Apartheid” Week, “die-in”s, and verbal and physical abuse of pro-Israel students; and,

Whereas this anti-Zionism is increasingly indistinguishable from outright anti-Semitism, such that even “progressive” young Jews are targeted as accomplices by definition of their Judaism regardless of their political views; and,

Whereas Rachel Beyda, a Jewish student at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), was initially rejected for a student council post due to her Jewish background; and,

Whereas two hundred Oberlin College alumni signed a petition decrying anti-Semitic intimidation at the school; and,

Whereas Students for Justice in Palestine at City College of New York (CUNY) has blamed high tuition on “Zionists”; and,

Whereas Milan Chatterjee, an Indian-American Hindu UCLA student who fought against the anti-Semitic BDS movement, discontinued his education in that hostile and unsafe campus climate due to the UCLA administration’s unwillingness to defend him against harassment and intimidation he faced; and

Whereas numerous similar anti-Semitic incidents have occurred in recent years; and,

Whereas these events impact the education of some Jewish students and prevent them from participating in student activities; and,

Whereas the Torah enjoins us to protect those who are physically threatened, stating, “You may not stand idly by your neighbor’s blood”

Therefore, the Rabbinical Council of America calls upon the leadership of North American colleges and universities to:

Prevent student organizations from engaging in activities which defame pro-Israel and Jewish students (e.g., arranging mock evictions and disturbing presentation of Jewish and/or Israeli speakers).

Defund and decharter student groups which advocate violence against Jews or Israelis or which receive money from federally recognized terrorist organizations, even as they respect freedom of speech and the right to protest.

Reject as immoral any calls to engage in BDS activities against Israel.


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