A controversial anti-Semitism resolution invoked by a college student government president has been unequivocally rejected by the school's Jewish community.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign student body president Connor Josellis argues that the resolution protects pro-Palestinian students. He contends while those students may be anti-Zionists, they're not necessarily anti-Semitic. In an email to 50,000 students, Josellis stated that the resolution – adopted in October – "highlighted that those on this campus whose beliefs may align with anti-Zionism at its root, are not being anti-Semitic in their criticism of Israel."
Leila Beckwith, co-founder of AMCHA, disagrees. "You know [when] you say anti-Zionist – everybody know that refers to Jews," states the UCLA professor emeritus. "So, you start out by making a case for being an anti-Zionist, but vilification of Jews follows next."
According to The Algemeiner, more than 400 Jewish students at UIUC protested the passage of the October resolution, which occurred without Jewish input. Though it stirred up a lot of controversy, Beckwith says the resolution can have a positive effect.
"When the public gets really distressed, then universities and administrators tend to be more careful, more concerned – and the federal government has gotten involved as well," she adds. In early December, President Donald Trump signed an executive order on combating anti-Semitism in schools and on America's university and college campuses.
AMCHA investigates, documents, educates the public about, and combats anti-Semitism at institutions of higher education across America.