A Campus Expert on Equity and Social Justice Labeled a “Dirty Zionist” for Hosting a Talk about Anti-Semitism

Tabia Lee describes herself as “a black woman with decades of experience teaching in public schools and leading workshops on diversity, equity, inclusion, and antiracism”—exactly the sort of person whom De Anza Community College would hire for the position of faculty director for the Office of Equity, Social Justice, and Multicultural Education. But after merely two years, Lee was fired for not holding to a sufficiently extreme and uncompromising view of what social justice entails. Among the many accusations leveled against her, and taken seriously by her employers, was excessive sympathy with Jews:

When I brought Jewish speakers to campus to address anti-Semitism and the Holocaust, some of my critics branded me a “dirty Zionist” and a “right-wing extremist.” When I formed the Heritage Month Workgroup, bringing together community members to create a multifaith holiday and heritage-month calendar, the De Anza student government voted to support this effort. However, my officemates and dean explained to me that such a project was unacceptable, because it didn’t focus on “decentering whiteness.”

When I later sought the support of our academic senate for the Heritage Month project, one opponent asked me if it was “about all the Jewish-inclusion stuff you have been pushing here,” and argued that the senate shouldn’t support the Heritage Month Workgroup efforts, because I was attempting to “turn our school into a religious school.” The senate president deferred to this claim, and the workgroup was denied support.

Read more at Compact

More about: Anti-Semitism, Israel on campus, Political correctness

Why Arab Jerusalem Has Stayed Quiet

One of Hamas’s most notable failures since October 7 is that it has not succeeded in inspiring a violent uprising either among the Palestinians of the West Bank or the Arab citizens of Israel. The latter seem horrified by Hamas’s actions and tend to sympathize with their own country. In the former case, quiet has been maintained by the IDF and Shin Bet, which have carried out a steady stream of arrests, raids, and even airstrikes.

But there is a third category of Arab living in Israel, namely the Arabs of Jerusalem, whose intermediate legal status gives them access to Israeli social services and the right to vote in municipal elections. They may also apply for Israeli citizenship if they so desire, although most do not.

On Wednesday, off-duty Israeli soldiers in the Old City of Jerusalem shot at a Palestinian who, it seems, was attempting to attack them. But this incident is a rare exception to the quiet that has prevailed in Arab Jerusalem since the war began. Eytan Laub asked a friend in an Arab neighborhood why:

Listen, he said, we . . . have much to lose. We already fear that any confrontation would have consequences. Making trouble may put our residence rights at risk. Furthermore, he added, not a few in the neighborhood, including his own family, have applied for Israeli citizenship and participating in disturbances would hardly help with that.

Such an attitude reflects a general trend since the end of the second intifada:

In recent years, the numbers of [Arab] Jerusalemites applying for Israeli citizenship has risen, as the social stigma of becoming Israeli has begun to erode and despite an Israeli naturalization process that can take years and result in denial (because of the requirement to show Jerusalem residence or the need to pass a Hebrew language test). The number of east Jerusalemites granted citizenship has also risen, from 827 in 2009 to over 1,600 in 2020.

Oddly enough, Laub goes on to argue, the construction of the West Bank separation fence in the early 2000s, which cuts through the Arab-majority parts of Jerusalem, has helped to encouraged better relations.

Read more at Jerusalem Strategic Tribune

More about: East Jerusalem, Israeli Arabs, Jerusalem