Moral rot: How Hamas sympathizers took over American college campuses

“Oct. 7 changed the world,” said Charlotte Kates in a March 24 meeting of the Columbia University Apartheid Divest. Kates, a member of the Israeli-designated terror group Samidoun, was invited by Apartheid Divest to speak on “the fight for liberation” as a part of the student group’s “Palestine Solidarity Month” event series.

Kates continued, “On Oct. 7, we witnessed the potential for a future Palestine liberated from Zionism by the forces of resistance,” before turning the floor over to Khaled Barakat, a Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine activist, who expressed his support for airline hijackings as a key tactic for the Palestinian resistance movement.

Apartheid Divest is not a fringe group. They have been instrumental in leading the weeks-long protest at Columbia while encouraging protests at other schools in New York. 

Across the country, at least 22 of America’s top universities, including Princeton, MIT, Harvard, Stanford and Yale, saw anti-Israel protests in the last week. From “Al-Qassam you make us proud! Take another soldier out!” and “Hamas we love you. We support your rockets too!” to “We say justice, you say how? Burn Tel Aviv to the ground!” These are not protests in favor of peace or a ceasefire; they are direct calls for the destruction of the state of Israel and the death of Jewish people around the world.

How did support for a terrorist organization take root on college campuses? Why have antisemitic protests broken out at these same universities? Most importantly, why have campus leaders not acted? 

These questions have been on the minds of decent Americans everywhere as horrific and hateful anti-Jewish rallies have broken out at universities across the country. Especially since these scenes are occurring on the very same campuses where students and faculty have spent years decrying free speech as “microaggressive violence,” canceling mainstream conservative speakers like Riley Gaines and shouting down viewpoints that fall outside of their left-wing orthodoxy.

The answer lies in that very same orthodoxy, where ideological groupthink has formed in our universities around Marxist ideas of power, identity and equity, which are inherently incompatible with the values of free expression and open discourse that used to define the American university experience. 

This doctrine is defined by a “critical” approach to history and society, viewing group dynamics as a struggle between the “oppressed” and the “oppressor” in a zero-sum game where equity — not to be mistaken for equality — is the only solution. To these college students, Israel is the “oppressor,” and Palestine is the “oppressed.” This worldview is infantile and discriminatory, and yet, it’s become the dominant view on U.S. college campuses today.

Two weeks ago, Columbia President Minouche Shafik agreed that Columbia’s response was insufficient, promising more action to protect Jewish students. But since that hearing, pro-Hamas protests have exploded, and Shafik’s only response has been to move classes online, even as some faculty members walked out to join the antisemitic crowd.

Just like the presidents of Harvard, UPenn and MIT, Shafik has done nothing because she seems to be driven by the same Marxist principles that are behind the nationwide antisemitic movement. These principles have completely captured our academic institutions, where diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) offices mandate discrimination toward students and faculty. The inmates are running the asylum, and there’s nobody left to stop them.


The rot runs so deep on our college campuses that drastic changes will be required to protect Jewish students and restore high standards of academic and moral excellence to many U.S. universities. The House holds the power of the purse, and we should not hesitate to halt funding from these universities if they are unable to restore order to their campus, expel students engaged in antisemitic activity and fire faculty who promote hatred and ostracize Jewish students.

The time for talking is over. All options are on the table as we watch whether these universities step up or continue down the road of cowardice and appeasement. 

Burgess Owens represents Utah’s 4th District and is a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee.

Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top