There has been a string of anti-Zionist — and not to mince words, verging into anti-Semitic — episodes at Rutgers. We’ve chronicled them.
In the most recent reported incident, on June 12, the executive board of the part-time lecturer chapter of Rutgers AAUP-AFT asks “the American Federation of Teachers to divest itself of Israeli bonds and for the United States government to cease all financial support to Israel at once.” That’s because “we can no longer allow ourselves to be complicit in the illegal acts of the Israeli government.” Israel practices apartheid, the statement asserted.
It’s signed by 12 part-time lecturers.
In a June 28 letter to the president of Rutgers, Jonathan Holloway, Josh Gottheimer, the Democrat who represents New Jersey’s Fifth District in the U. S. Congress, responds. “To be sure, Rutgers’ part-time lecturers are entitled to hold their own opinions, even those which may be disagreeable,” he wrote, “but it is important to recognize that invective which singles out, disparages, delegitimizes, or demonizes Israel can and in many cases does fall outside of bounds.”
Therefore, he continued, it’s “important to send out a clear message” to everyone that no one, including Jews, be “made to feel unwelcome at our state’s flagship university.
“I would ask you to please speak out clearly and quickly against this hate-filled misinformation campaign and rhetoric.
“The statement from the lecturers is pretty pointed and full of very harsh misinformation,” Mr. Gottheimer said in an interview. Some of his constituents — other part-time lecturers, who were copied on their organization’s demand — sent it on to him. “They were very upset about the statement,” he said. “So I wrote to the president to ask him to speak against this hate-filled rhetoric and false information. I am very concerned with this trend on university campuses, writ large.
“This is our state university. This is a major public university. I am very concerned.
“I hope that this statement represents a very slim, splinter view, but I presume that the sentiment is strong enough so that this union’s representatives were willing to put ink to paper with a rather egregious statement.
“This is never ending,” this new onslaught of on-campus anti-Semitism, Mr. Gottheimer added. “That is what it is important, when it comes to anti-Semitism and false statements, that you have a strong cop on the beat.
“I believe that as a representative, it is really important that I play this role. That is why I am speaking out whenever I see this kind of hate-filled rhetoric.”