Frequently asked questions
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I support taking a strong stance against antisemitism, but I’m concerned that parts of this resolution would silence criticism of Israel. Can we change those?
Concerns about this resolution silencing criticism of Israel are completely misplaced, and we are not open to substantially changing the sections in question. No one gets to define what hate against the Jewish community is except Jewish leadership. If this were a debate about condemning racism on campus and improving representation for POC, we would not suggest the majority of POC are incorrect in their definition of racism, and we should certainly not debate it.
What about Jewish students who are against IHRA and oppose the aspects of this resolution that relate to Israel?
There are many people of color, Latinx, immigrants, and black Americans who supported Donald Trump, but we understand that they do not represent the majority of voices in those communities. The same holds true for this resolution. A small fringe of Jewish students, not leaders within the Jewish community, have voiced opposition to increased Jewish representation but it needs to be said that the vast majority of opposition has been from outside the Jewish community., and from students that have viciously targeted Jewish students in the past. The IHRA definition has the support of the mainstream Jewish community. We shouldn’t allow the opposition of this resolution from fringe movements and beyond the Jewish community to distract us from what the vast majority of the Jewish community has told us.
Why should we accept the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism as opposed to others?
This International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance working definition of antisemitism is exactly what it sounds like. It is an internationally recognized definition of antisemitism. It was created by Jewish leaders and experts from all over the world, not just the one individual that SJP is tokenizing. This definition has been widely adopted by the vast majority of Jewish organizations all over the world. The Anti-Defamation League which is the leading organization fighting antisemitism in the world has also endorsed this definition. Moreover, it has been endorsed by over 30 governments around the world, including the United States government under President Barack Obama and President Biden. Most importantly, it reflects the lived experiences that Jewish students have had with antisemitism on this campus.
Criticizing Israel isn’t antisemitic/anti-Zionism isn’t the same as antisemitism.
No one in support of this resolution is arguing that criticizing Israel is antisemitic. The Jewish community’s relationship with their self-determination isn’t up for debate as a part of this resolution. This would not be controversial for any other minority group on this campus.
Why not make this resolution broader to condemn all forms of bigotry?
All struggles against racism and oppression are connected and deserve our attention, but each one is unique as well. The need to speak out against other forms of bigotry does not diminish the importance of addressing the specific, recurring hatred that the Jewish people have faced and continue to face.