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Sunday, November 21, 2010

York University moves to suppress hate speech

I'm sure you'll all be pleased to hear that York University in Ontario - which is notoriously anti-Israel - has finally moved to suppress hate speech. But only when the hate speech is uttered by Jews. And in this case, the Jews were speaking against notorious British former MP George Galloway, who was recently allowed into Canada for the first time in a long time.
Not everyone was thrilled with the prospect of having Galloway, who, according to wry commentator Christopher Hitchens is “100 percent consistent in support for thugs and criminals,” arriving on the York campus to spew forth his rabid fulminations against Zionism, Israel, and the West. In particular, Toronto-based Rabbi Ahron Hoch took it upon himself to post an announcement on his Aish web site in which he urged readers to proactively protest Galloway’s appearance, and to take specific steps to inform the greater community about the noxious speaker, including emailing York’s president, calling the dean’s office to lodge a formal complaint, and participating in a rally to be held on the York campus.

Feeling that the Galloway visit was one more contribution to the cesspool of anti-Semitic, pro-Palestinian activism that has punctuated the York campus for years now, Rabbi Hoch took York’s president, Mamdouh Shoukri, to task for allowing Galloway to speak “under the pretext of freedom of speech,” even though it “was never meant to be used as a vehicle to spread support for terror, murder and genocide.”

And more relevant to Rabbi Hoch was that York’s president had again failed to take a strong stand to rid his campus of anti-Israelism that frequently has morphed into anti-Semitism. “Mr. Shoukri has again showed his amazing tolerance for anti-Semitism and lack of vigilance regarding the feeling of safety for Jewish students on campus,” Hoch wrote.

Rabbi Hoch did receive a response from the university, but not the one he had probably hoped for. In fact, what he received was a formal letter from Harriet Lewis, York’s general counsel, who ordered the rabbi, in no uncertain terms, to remove the announcement “from [his] web site and to direct [his] supporters to cease and desist” any further distribution of the online poster. Why was the university demanding these steps? Because it believed that Hoch’s comment about President Shoukri was “untrue, harmful to [him] and his reputation, and to that of the university.” More ominously, the university considered the rabbi’s words “actionable,”( read: criminal), and expected “a retraction and apology forthwith.”

The letter also warned Hoch that his request for individuals to come to the York campus to protest Galloway’s appearance “might disturb and provoke others to disturb the peace” and “that this too is actionable and may constitute criminal behavior.” (Emphasis added.)

Read the whole thing and learn about York's disgraceful history of anti-Semitism. I'll save you a couple of clicks. Aish took the ad off their site, and Shoukri is Egyptian.

There's an interview with Rabbi Hoch on a Canadian radio station here.

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At 2:52 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Martin Kramer posted this:


Khalidi and Mearsheimer, who talk like the Middle East is just one lovely flower garden...and they just can't figure out why the Israelis keep defending themselves. They find it soooo unreasonable! And a FB commenter posted a reminder that Khalidi needs to be brought up for aiding in funding the flotilla's planned, armed attack on Israel...

At 4:06 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

As Mark Steyn has pointed out, there's a long list of things you can't say in the Dominion, thanks in no small part to Canada's official Jewish establishment.

Just don't expect them to stand up for Jewish free speech rights there.

What could go wrong indeed


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