San Francisco State University Hillel has been quiet throughout this controversy. Nearly a month to the date of the incident at Malcolm X plaza, they have released a public statement, calling for community members to sign a petition in support of Jewish students at the school.
From San Francisco State Hillel:
We are deeply troubled by the recent events that have taken place at San Francisco State University, in which individual students have openly glorified violence, including in this latest incident directed against Israeli soldiers. These expressions of violence are unacceptable and have no place in an academic environment. This has already led to an increased sense of fear and intimidation among some students, even while we continue to engage in dynamic and visible Jewish programming on campus. SF State has, in recent years truly become a welcoming environment for Jewish students and we are committed to maintaining that openness.
We appreciate the work that goes on behind the scenes by President Leslie Wong's office, the Dean of Students, local law enforcement and security personnel, campus group leaders, and students to ensure that SFSU continues to be a safe place for all students, irrespective of religion, nationality, ethnicity, race, gender identity, sexual orientation or political affiliation, and demand that the work not stop until all students feel safe on campus.
Please sign their petition here
To San Francisco State Hillel:
The community appreciates that you have been working behind the scenes. Nonetheless, as the primary representative of the Jewish community at SFSU, you ought to have been the conduit for information, for planning, and for coordinating a community-wide response. There has been only silence for nearly a month.
Indeed, "individual students have openly glorified violence", but when these "individual students" are the presidents of student organizations at a tax-payer financed institution, it is an indication of a much deeper problem.
Parents with children at SFSU, and the overall Jewish community look to Hillel for proactive leadership in university matters such as these. Please make an effort to communicate more effectively with your constituency. Thank you for your continued efforts, and remember than we are all partners in insuring a safe and successful experience for our students.
I am happy to sign the petition, but there is so much more Hillel chapters should be doing. On the UC Irvine campus, where I teach, Hillel has been usually missing in action. From the reports I get from my contacts at UC San Diego, Hillel is worse than at UCI.
A big part of the problem is that Hillel depends on the universities for their chapters ability to establish themselves and function on campus. They are afraid of alienating the universities. They are also afraid if the public becomes aware of problems on campus that prospective Jewish students will go elsewhere. I say if they do, maybe the university will get the message.
Hillel needs to become more involved. They should have spoken out loud and clear and DEMANDED that SFSU take immediate action. Words are insufficient. Some of these students need to be expelled.
It just gets worser and worser.
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