October 25, 2023

Campus Anti-Semitism: Billionaires Say Bye-Bye

When Jew hatred found a safe haven at Harvard and Penn, some of the schools’ wealthiest donors said good-bye.

We hate to see it, but Harvard and Penn are getting some serious blowback from wealthy donors about their — let’s face it — grotesque response to the barbaric October 7 attack by Hamas terrorists on the people of Israel.

In the wake of the assault during which Hamas took more than 200 hostages and massacred some 1,400 men, women, and children, including at least 33 Americans, more than 30 Harvard student organizations signed a statement holding Israel “entirely responsible for all unfolding violence.”

So much for an “elite” education. Former Harvard President Larry Summers, who was “sickened” by the students’ statement, noted, “In nearly 50 years of Harvard affiliation, I have never been as disillusioned and alienated as I am today.”

Under pressure, Harvard’s administration eventually released a statement from President Claudine Gay: “As the events of recent days continue to reverberate, let there be no doubt that I condemn the terrorist atrocities perpetuated by Hamas. Such inhumanity is abhorrent, whatever one’s individual views of the origins of longstanding conflicts in the region. … While our students have the right to speak for themselves, no student group — not even 30 student groups — speaks for Harvard University or its leadership.”

The statement would’ve actually meant something had Gay not waited to see which way the political wind was blowing before penning it. As The College Fix reports, it was too little, too late for one billionaire Israeli couple, Idan and Batia Ofer, who promptly left the executive board of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. But that wasn’t all. As The College Fix continues, “Another billionaire couple, Leslie and Abigail Wexner … has terminated their organization’s ‘financial and programmatic relationship’ with the university.”

Another Ivy League school, the University of Pennsylvania, felt a similar backlash, with billionaire donor Marc Rowan organizing a donor revolt. “Criticizing the university’s leadership for not taking a firmer stance against antisemitism, Rowan has urged other donors to ‘close their checkbooks’ until two top university leaders resign.” Other wealthy donors followed suit, with TV producer Dick Wolf accusing university leaders of failing to represent the school’s ideals and values, and former businessman and diplomat Jon Huntsman calling Penn “unrecognizable.” Ouch.

In other good news from the halls of academia, Cornell history professor Russell Rickford — the guy who told a crowd at an off-campus rally that he was “exhilarated” by the Hamas attack on Israel — has taken a leave of absence from the university. “I recognize that some of the language I used was reprehensible,” he wrote in a letter of apology.

In still more good news, some leading law firms are saying “Nope” to law students who’ve signed onto the despicable statements of support for Hamas and condemnation of Israel that have been making their way around college campuses. As our Emmy Griffin wrote last week, Cal Berkeley law professor Steven Davidoff Solomon is imploring employers to think twice before hiring a young anti-Semitic lawyer: “Legal employers in the recruiting process should … treat these law students like the adults they are. If a student endorses hate, dehumanization or anti-Semitism, don’t hire him. When students face consequences for their actions, they straighten up. … If a student endorses hatred, it isn’t only your right but your duty not to hire him.”

Now if we could get City University of New York to give Danny Shaw the gate. Shaw, a professor of Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and Race, Ethnicity, Class and Gender, called the Israeli people “straight Babylon swine” and “racist arrogant bullies” in a since-deleted X post.

Finally, author and playwright David Mamet, himself a Jew, has a suggestion: “Thanksgiving is coming up. When your kids come home from college, don’t send them back. Stop funding anti-Semitic hatred. … For a Jew to send his or her son or daughter to these elite institutions because they’re going to make connections is the same thing as putting their daughters in a brothel because they’re going to meet powerful men there. … The liberals have never done anything for the Jews. The only person who ever did anything for the Jews was Trump. And he brought peace to the Middle East. And liberal Jews are saying, ‘Oh, I don’t like this Trump.’”

We’ve never understood the longstanding loyalty that Jewish Americans feel toward the Democrat Party, especially given Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s awful abandonment of the Jews of Europe during the Holocaust. Neither, it seems, does Mamet. But he’s clearly had enough: “It’s time to stop putting our heads in the sand,” he said, “and it’s time to stop letting people piss on our backs and tell us it’s raining.”

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