Three University of California Schools Violate University Policy and State Laws to Sponsor Antisemitic Events Promoting Boycott of Israel
TAKE ACTION: Write to the Regents at RegentsOffice@ucop.edu and urge them to investigate events and publicize results.
AMCHA Initiative aggressively monitors campuses across the United States for antisemitic activity. The recent victories in the fight against antisemitism, where more than 210 university leaders across the country have deemed the academic boycott a violation of academic freedom and antithetical to the very mission of a university, and 134 members of Congress have denounced the boycott, have been outstanding.
However, AMCHA has recently witnessed an alarming increase in university faculty who are using their university positions and departments to promote the academic boycott of Israel on their campuses - despite the condemnation of university leaders.
Most notably, AMCHA Initiative has identified three University of California Schools — UC Davis, UCLA and UC Riverside — that appear to have violated university policy and state law when they used taxpayer dollars to sponsor an event featuring Omar Barghouti, the founder and most vocal advocate of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. UC Faculty and departments were instrumental in bringing, sponsoring and funding Barghouti to speak on their campuses. At UC Riverside, students were even given course credit for attending and listening to Barghouti’s hate speech.
Barghouti's talk was pure anti-Israel propaganda and political screed, laced with classic antisemitism:
- Invoking classic blood libel, Barghouti accused Israeli soldiers of "hunting children," saying that sharpshooter Israeli soldiers target Palestinian children and shoot to kill, and that the soldiers "entice children like mice into a trap and murder them for sport," leaving the children with their "stomachs ripped out, the gaping holes in their torsos."
- Barghouti accused “Israel and its well-oiled lobby groups" of "buying and paying for the allegiance of Congress" and controlling the media.
These departmentally-sponsored events can't help but create a hostile environment for Jewish students. They also appear to be clear violations of university policy and state law:
- Regents Policy on Course Content - prohibits the use of the university for political indoctrination
- CA Education Code 92000(a)(3) - prohibits the use of the university's name for the promotion of boycotts
- CA Government Code 8314 - prohibits state employees from using state university resources for political or personal purposes
To bring awareness to the inappropriateness of faculty and departments using state resources for political indoctrination and the promotion of a boycott, AMCHA wrote to the Chancellors of UC Riverside and UC Davis:
AMCHA correspondence with UC Riverside Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox
AMCHA correspondence with UC Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi
AMCHA also spoke at the UC Regents meeting to bring attention to this matter and demand that the Regents investigate and publicize their findings.
For further details, you may see AMCHA’s unabridged remarks to the Regents.
Additionally, you may see the full packet distributed to the Regents regarding these events.
TAKE ACTION: Please consider taking action by writing the Regents at RegentsOffice@ucop.edu, and urging them to investigate and publicize their findings. Here is a sample you may use and modify as you see fit (and of course, feel free to write your own):
I am horrified to hear that students on a UC campus are receiving course credit for listening to Omar Barghouti’s hate speech. Furthermore, it has come to my attention that university policy and state laws are being violated by faculty and departmental sponsorship of events promoting the academic boycotts of Israel. As an alumni, as a parent, as a former student, I urge you to investigate the inappropriate behavior of your faculty and any university policy or state laws violated by their actions, and to make public the results of your investigation. Thank you for your prompt attention to this serious concern.
Thank you for your support and your voice!