Tags: Exclusive Interviews | Israel | MidPoint | Campus | hostility | Israel | college

Alan Dershowitz: Campus Hostility to Israel Comes From the Top

By    |   Monday, 09 Mar 2015 09:16 PM

The bizarre spectacle of a UCLA student government candidate being quizzed about her Jewishness is one result of a hostility toward Israel that is nurtured in liberal academic circles and sometimes becomes outright anti-Semitism, says legal scholar, author, and pro-Israel advocate Alan Dershowitz.

Students like those who questioned a UCLA classmate's fitness for office last month based on her Jewish identity get such ideas "from biased, bigoted professors," Dershowitz told "MidPoint" guest host John Bachman on Newsmax TV on Monday.

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Joined on air by Philadelphia trial lawyer Heather Hansen, Dershowitz also said the UCLA case illustrates another project underway in academia.

"There is a very, very carefully calibrated attempt on college campuses today to delegitimatize Jewish students, particularly those who show any support for Israel," he said. "It starts at the very top."

It trickles down to faculty "who use the podium and the lectern of the classroom to indoctrinate them in anti-Israel and sometimes anti-Semitic views," he said, and from there it influences student attitudes and behavior.

In a student council hearing last month that was captured on videotape, Rachel Beyda of UCLA was asked whether she could be fair and impartial as a student officer — given that she is Jewish.

Beyda ultimately won a seat on the student judicial board, but it took two votes. The classmates who questioned her impartiality later apologized.

Trial lawyer Hansen voiced disbelief "that anyone is still engaging in this type of behavior," and said that a campus intervention, possibly by university administrators or federal officials acting under Title VI diversity provisions of the Higher Education Act, might be appropriate in some cases.

Dershowitz said he preferred to let the marketplace sort out what's acceptable or not in matters of speech.

"I don't like the university getting involved in things like this," he said. "They have shown an utter inability to protect freedom of speech, and I don't like the way Title VI and other titles are used to compel universities to restrict free speech."

"The marketplace of ideas has to remain open," he said, adding that the UCLA story "has a happy ending."

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The bizarre spectacle of a UCLA student government candidate being quizzed about her Jewishness is one result of a hostility toward Israel that is nurtured in liberal academic circles and sometimes becomes outright anti-Semitism, says legal scholar Alan Dershowitz.
Campus, hostility, Israel, college, professors, students, UCLA, anti-Semitism, Dershowitz, Heather Hansen
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2015-16-09
Monday, 09 Mar 2015 09:16 PM
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