Could you imagine the hell that would break loose if a member of a student government were to ever ask an applicant for a appointed position one of the following questions?
- Given that you are an Afrrican-American student and very active in the black community, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?
- Given that you are a Chicano student and very active in the Hispanic community, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?
- Given that you are a gay student and very active in the LGBT community, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?
- Given that you are a female student and very active feminist groups, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?
- Given that you are a Muslim student and very active in the Muslim community, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?
Rest assured, there would be protest marches, heated commentary in the campus paper, and public comment by senior officials in the campus administration denouncing the hate and bigotry expressed in any one of these questions.
But none of those questions was asked of Rachel Beyda at UCLA. Instead, she was asked “Given that you are a Jewish student and very active in the Jewish community, how do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view …?”
Yep, that’s right – her Jewish identity was deemed to be a disqualifying factor when she sought appointment to a Judicial Board of the UCLA student government.
For the next 40 minutes, after Ms. Beyda was dispatched from the room, the council tangled in a debate about whether her faith and affiliation with Jewish organizations, including her sorority and Hillel, a popular student group, meant she would be biased in dealing with sensitive governance questions that come before the board, which is the campus equivalent of the Supreme Court.
The discussion, recorded in written minutes and captured on video, seemed to echo the kind of questions, prejudices and tropes — particularly about divided loyalties — that have plagued Jews across the globe for centuries, students and Jewish leaders said.
Yeah, you read that right – at one of the nation’s premiere public universities, students actually debated whether or not a Jewish student could be permitted to serve in a sensitive position because of her religious faith. But even more shocking, the board examining Ms. Beyda rejected her appointment because of her Jewish faith – and reconsidered the matter only after their faulty advisor pointed out that being a Jew did not constitute a conflict of interest that would prevent her from doing the job for which she was applying.
Now I will point out that the campus press has spoken out against what happened and the university administration has declared this to be a “teaching moment”. But may I point out that the students involved all still hold their seats on the student government. They have not been pressured to resign and they have not been impeached and removed. As I stated before, that is how much this stands in contrast with how any of the other versions of the question that I suggested earlier would have been dealt with. It therefore seems that Jew-hatred is alive and well in American higher education – and the degree to which it exists has been highlighted in this article on the ten most anti-Semitic campuses in America on which UCLA ranks #9
. Interestingly enough, President Obama's alma mater is the most anti-Semitic college or university in America (which may explain some things about his attitudes towards both Israel and Muslim terrorists).
H/T Volokh Conspiracy