New York City Councilman Lew Fidler has sent a letter to CUNY, ripping into an investigation it conducted of a February BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) event aimed at Israel on Brooklyn College’s campus.
Fidler, a Brooklyn Democrat, and colleagues from both sides of the aisle — including Council GOP Leader James Oddo, challenge the intent of the investigation and call into question CUNY’s conclusion that there was no concrete proof that religion had anything to do with why four students, two of whom wore yarmulkes, were wrongfully evicted from the February event.
“The report comes to the conclusion that the four Jewish students who were removed were not removed for discriminatory reasons. The reasoning for this conclusion is sophomoric: because not all obviously Jewish students were removed, the four who were removed were removed for reasons other than their obvious religious background. This is ridiculous. You cannot possibly believe that unless all from a group are discriminatorily targeted that it is not possible to target some from that group. The conclusion defies logic.”
While the report rejected anti-Semitism as the root cause of the four students’ dismissal, it did say that a “plausible inference can be drawn that the removal of the four students was motivated by their political viewpoint.”
Fidler also criticizes the University for not addressing what it refers to as a “core issue”—why Brooklyn College allowed the Political Science Department to sponsor the event in the first place and what the sponsorship actually means. “Given the long standing practice of Brooklyn College’s Political Science Department in sponsoring only one side’s views on Middle East questions, we would have thought that this would have been the essential question.”