Latest update: December 12th, 2012
CUNY Chancellor Matthew Goldstein has stepped into a gigantic mound of odoriferous matter, and it isn’t clear if and how he’s getting out of it, and, worse, what will the cleaning bill be. What’s worse, it’s possible he didn’t even intend all the mean things people are saying about him. Maybe all he wanted was to help…
What it comes down to is that under the guise of a move to make its faculty more diverse, the CUNY administration have turned Jews into a separate minority group, named “White/Jewish.” And the CUNY Jewish faculty somehow aren’t convinced the purpose of all that diversity is to try and hire more Jews…
Historically, numerus clausus (“closed number” in Latin) was a method of limiting the number of Jewish students accepted in institutions of higher education. No matter how good you or your grades were, schools like Columbia notoriously kept your numbers down by employing a racial quota.
If you will, numerus clausus is the exact opposite of affirmative action. And until after WW2, it was practiced, albeit unofficially, by a number of private universities and medical schools against Jewish applicants. Harvard and Columbia were among the notorious east-coast universities limiting Jewish attendance, as were Cornell University School of Medicine, and Boston University Medical School.
Now try and read through the following paragraph, by Chancellor Goldstein, part of his “Diversity Action Plan” letter. It’s not an easy read, I had to do it three times to understand:
“The Diversity Action Plan was prepared by the Ad Hoc Committee on Strengthening Faculty Diversity, a committee comprising trustees, members of the chancellery, presidents, and faculty and student representatives. The plan’s strategies are designed to achieve the University’s goal of further promoting a supportive work environment and an inclusive university community, which are essential to organizational effectiveness.”
What this paragraph says, I think, and correct me if I’m wrong, is: We want a synchronicity between the ethnic makeup of our students and our faculty. In other words, if (say) 30% of our students are Eskimo, then we want a corresponding 30% of our faculty to also be Eskimo (See how cleverly I avoided using non-PC ethnic examples? I lived and worked for almost 40 years in NY City…).
Just read the next paragraph from the Chancellor:
“The City University of New York has a strong commitment to faculty diversity and to fostering a climate of inclusion across the University. Our dedication to diversity is reflected in our student body and among our faculty and staff. In recent years, the University has reaffirmed its commitment to transformative change to ensure that diversity and inclusion remain central to our core values. The Diversity Action Plan will continue to build on our successes.”
What that paragraph says is, if need be, we’ll kick out of here some non-Eskimo faculty to make room for more Eskimo professors.
Now, I downloaded the actual Diversity Action Plan (PDF), and went to page 6, under “III. Moving Forward: Diversity Study,” and discovered that “To examine recruitment, retention, and accountability challenges and opportunities within the University, Cambridge Hill Partners undertook the following activities:”
Drop down to item 3 on the list of activities:
Conducted focus groups based on identity: African-American/Black, Asian, White/Jewish, Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender, Hispanic/Latino(a), individuals with disabilities, Italian American, men and women.
Remember the Sesame Street game, “One of these things is not like the others”?
Go carefully over the list of diversity-starved groups listed here and tell me which of these is not like the others?
David Gordon, a history professor at Bronx Community College and the Graduate Center picked up on it before any of you, and told the NY Post: “This is, as far as I know, the first time a religion has been introduced into any affirmative-action document.”
Yes! Everyone else on that list could belong to any religion, except, as Borat would put it, the source of trouble everywhere – the Jews.
“What would the response be to a category ‘White/Methodist?’ Silly? Irrelevant?” Gordon asked.
Assemblyman Dov Hikind, who last week asked the state attorney general to look into complaints of anti-Semitism in hiring at CUNY’s Brooklyn College, said the new “White/Jewish” category was “abhorrent.”
“I think it goes to the idea of ‘We have enough of this group, let’s get more of that (other) group,’” Hikind told the Post. “Diversity is a wonderful thing, but I think the university should hire the best and most qualified educators. If that means all professors are Asian, so be it.”
About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.The author's opinion does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Jewish Press.
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