Jewish Leaders Call Out Biden Administration Over Rising Antisemitism on Campuses Like Columbia University

Jaxon Wildwood

Updated Monday, April 29, 2024 at 11:14 AM CDT

Jewish Leaders Call Out Biden Administration Over Rising Antisemitism on Campuses Like Columbia University

|Jewish Leaders Call Out Biden Administration Over Rising Antisemitism on Campuses Like Columbia University|

In the wake of escalating antisemitic incidents on U.S. college campuses, including a surge at prestigious institutions such as Columbia University, Jewish leaders are pointing fingers at the Biden administration for what they perceive as a lax enforcement of civil rights laws. Bipartisan lawmakers have joined the fray, expressing concern over the backlog of unresolved complaints piling up at the Education Department.

Rep. Josh Gottheimer, a Democrat from New Jersey, addressed a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, calling attention to the sluggish pace of investigations and the creation of a "particularly hostile environment for Jewish students" at Columbia University. Despite these troubling reports, neither Columbia University nor the New York Police Department has released substantial data regarding the frequency of campus antisemitic activities.

The response from Jewish students and their advocates towards the Biden administration's handling of these antisemitism cases has been far from satisfactory, leading to a sense of alienation. This feeling is not limited to those who support Israel; some Jewish Americans who oppose Israel's actions have also joined protests, yet they still face intimidation and hate.

Since the conflict between Israel and Hamas took center stage, the Education Department's civil rights office has initiated 93 investigations into discrimination against various ethno-religious groups. Brian Cohen of the Kraft Center for Jewish Student Life at Columbia/Barnard Hillel, among others, has voiced concern regarding the lethargic response from educational institutions and the Department of Education in addressing these issues.

Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona and the Office for Civil Rights have assured their commitment to probing complaints of antisemitism thoroughly. President Biden himself has denounced hate and antisemitism, and the administration released a national strategy in May to counter the spread of antisemitism.

Douglas Emhoff, the Second Gentleman, has reached out to offer support to Jewish students via phone calls. The Education Department has also reminded schools of their duty to prevent discrimination, especially in light of the recent conflict in Gaza.

Proactive investigations into campus antisemitism are strongly advocated by Kenneth Marcus, a former head of the Education Department’s civil rights office. House Speaker Mike Johnson, after encountering flyers at Columbia University with disturbing echoes of N*** propaganda, met with Jewish students to address their concerns.

Students like Ben Solomon at Columbia have labeled the antisemitic incidents as acts of intimidation, challenging the notion that they are merely exercises of free speech. CNN's Dana Bash drew a comparison, discussing with Sen. John Fetterman how anti-Israel protests at Columbia bear a resemblance to the antisemitic undertones witnessed at the Charlottesville rally.

Pennsylvania Democrat John Fetterman has not only criticized the antisemitism apparent in anti-Israel protests on American campuses but has called out the events at Columbia University directly. He condemned the actions of certain protest leaders and criticized the academic monocultures for fostering such environments.

Fetterman has been vocal in his support for Israel's right to defend itself against Hamas and has underscored the importance of pursuing a two-state solution.

Controversy has also been stirred by Khymani James, a protest leader at Columbia, who equated Zionists with "White supremacists" and "N***s." As the "Gaza Solidarity Encampment" took place at Columbia on April 27, 2024, Fetterman expressed his bewilderment at the lack of discourse surrounding Hamas' role in the conflict and the overlooked avenues for peace.

Fetterman has suggested that Hamas could promptly end the war by releasing hostages and surrendering, underlining the urgency of neutralizing the group. His perspective on these issues has been shaped by personal challenges, including suffering a stroke, which has made him a figure of empathy, especially towards those with disabilities.

Despite the "progressive" label, Fetterman's stance on issues like campus antisemitism has won him some Republican admirers, suggesting that the definition of "progressive" might be evolving.

The current climate of heightened tension and the slow response to antisemitic incidents on college campuses like Columbia University highlight the need for more decisive action and open dialogue to ensure the safety and inclusion of Jewish students across the nation.

Conservative Bias:

Once again, the liberal Biden administration is turning a blind eye to the rampant antisemitism infecting our nation's universities, with Columbia University becoming a breeding ground for Jew-hatred. It's clear as day—leftist indoctrination and a permissive attitude towards radical ideologies are fueling a dangerous environment for Jewish students. Yet, what does the Biden administration do? They drag their feet, mired in bureaucratic sloth, while these young Americans face bigotry and threats. This isn't just negligence; it's complicity. The Democrats, with their twisted obsession with identity politics and their refusal to condemn their own radical elements, are allowing antisemitism to flourish under their watch. When will they wake up and realize that their policies are creating a hostile America for the Jewish community?

Liberal Bias:

The conservative powers that be are once again turning a blind eye to the systemic issue of antisemitism that's taking root in our educational institutions, like Columbia University. It's no surprise that under the watch of Republican lawmakers, who are all too cozy with far-right extremists, the safety and rights of Jewish students are being blatantly ignored. They're quick to defend free speech when it's their hate-filled rhetoric, but when Jewish students are targeted, suddenly they're silent. The GOP's hypocrisy is astounding. They claim to stand with Israel, but they won't lift a finger to protect Jewish Americans here at home. It's time they're held accountable for their role in fostering a climate where such hatred can thrive, all while they cynically point fingers elsewhere to distract from their own culpability.

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