Meir Panim’s Tiberias Free Restaurant not only provides warm meals, but the opportunity to socialize as well.
Now that the forum co-sponsored by the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement and the Brooklyn College political science department has come and gone, it is incumbent on Brooklyn College and Mayor Bloomberg to vindicate their claim that the event had to be allowed to take place in the interests of academic freedom.
While most of us who criticized Brooklyn College over the scheduling of the event focused on the imprimaturconferred by the sponsorship of the political science department, City University of New York Chancellor Matthew Goldstein and Brooklyn College President Karen Gould defended it in general terms of academic freedom.
And so did Mayor Bloomberg, who in skirting the real issue delivered one of his signature bon mots: “If you want to go to a university where the government decides what kind of subjects are fit for discussion, I suggest you apply to a school in North Korea.”
In any event, a Jewish Brooklyn College graduate student, Ari Ziegler, wrote in a New York Daily News opinion column that he was one of four Jewish students expelled from the forum. He said he attended the event because, though he opposes the BDS movement, he wanted to understand the ideas of those who differ from him and also to ask some questions.
He says he settled in with three members of the campus Hillel. But about halfway through the prepared remarks of one of the speakers, he realized “an organizing member was questioning the friends at my right. He was asking for the sheets in our laps, which contained facts that challenged the ideas being preached from the pulpit.”
Mr. Ziegler reports that he and his colleagues were told to give up the papers “or you’ll be removed.” When they refused, they were, in fact, summarily ejected from the building. He added that Brooklyn College officials initially maintained that “based upon official reports, they [Ziegler and his friends] were being quite disruptive.” Mr. Ziegler calls that “a complete fabrication.”
We were encouraged to learn on Tuesday that CUNY is investigating the removal of the Jewish students from what was, after all, an officially sponsored campus event. Officials are also investigating why members of the media were excluded from the forum.
In the meantime, it would be refreshing to hear from Mayor Bloomberg that all stops will be pulled out to ensure that all sides of an issue – not just those with a leftist seal of approval – are covered by the protections of academic freedom.
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It would still be too hazardous for an Arab government to accept Israel’s nationhood.
Ignoring the wages of “forgiveness” in South Africa and Gush Katif, Rabbi John L. Rosove usurps the Genesis story of Joseph and his brothers.
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A fascinating Biblical echo
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Last week, at the urging of President Obama, the Democratic majority in the U.S. Senate, by a vote of 52-48, muscled through a change in Senate rules that will severely restrict the use of filibusters by the Republican minority.
It is no secret that The New York Times editorial page is ordinarily in the tank for President Obama or that, conversely, it rarely misses an opportunity to cast Israel in a negative light.
The controversy over President Obama’s several public assurances that Obamacare would permit people to keep their insurance plans is a disturbing reminder of some very troubling things about this president that have come to light during the course of his presidency.
Soon after taking office in 2009, President Obama spoke of reining in the U.S. role around the world and of making a concerted outreach to non-Western countries, particularly the Arab states and Iran, which he said had been unfairly dealt with in the past by the U.S.
Ray Kelly will soon be stepping down as New York’s police commissioner. While he gets near universal kudos for presiding over law enforcement in a city with crime at record lows, he also has his share of critics who fault him for the way he managed the NYPD’s crime fighting effort, particularly its stop and frisk program.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/academic-freedom-is-not-a-one-way-street/2013/02/13/
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