On May 12, CUNY Law School commencement speaker Fatima Mousa Mohammed called (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RpvTrB9P_M&t=4523s ) for the destruction of the Jewish state and urged students to “fight against… Zionism around the world.”
That CUNY claims its mission is "... to practice law in the service of human needs and transform the teaching, learning, and practice of law to include those it has excluded, marginalized, and oppressed.." while marginalizing and oppressing Jewish students, it is a mockery of this mission and of justice.
The school may believe that focusing on minorities and favoring the marginalized ie racialized ie non white students, is doing some kind of justice, but rewarding, celebrating and even selecting an outspoken antisemite to speak at commencement or at any other public forum makes its claim about justice for all, a joke.
There is clearly a need to discipline all who were involved in selecting the antisemitic Fatima Mousa Mohammed to speak. It was unconscionable that she was not stopped, that the Dean applauded her, and that no one spoke up to point out both the inappropriateness, lies and bigotry in her talk. Ms Mohammed is being encouraged by a radical unjust, antisemitic curriculum, biased atmosphere, and leftist teaching that you can smear the Jewish state, brand it as anti-Palestinian and say most outrageous lies and there are no consequences. That is exactly how Jew hatred was spread in Germany in the 1930s and by the Mufti of Jerusalem in the Mandate area, while under British control.
The hatred of Jews was a reflex response by Haj Amin Al-Husseini and he was never brought to account for his crimes against humanity. And today his message lives on, in folks like Fatima Mousa Mohammed. If CUNY has no consequences, such as demanding the resignation of Dean Sudha Setty, and the NY bar allows Fatima to practice law, then it is yet another sad day for justice, a cruel outcome for the Jewish people, and yet another step towards the end of justice and freedom in America. No one is free, if such hatred can be on display with no condemnation by the institution, and continued funding by the government.
CUNY Law has much to do to make up for its continued harassment of Jewish students, its chosen ignorance of distasteful and dehumanizing antisemitism. Zionism is the belief in the Jewish people's right to self-determination in their ancient homeland, a land that was NEVER an Arab country, never a sovereign Palestine and has had Jewish inhabitants for over 2500 years. Claiming Zionism is evil and must be stopped, is exactly what Hitler and his murderous Nazi machine said of the Jews. THERE IS NO DIFFERENCE.
Sadly, today's hatred is masquerading as anti-Zionism, but it is nonetheless, Jew hatred. And calling for any BDS act, for attacks on Israel, for her isolation, for reducing the relationship with her Western democratic allies, are all steps to aid the antisemites in their quest for her eradication.
If CUNY Law was truly about justice, equality and social activism, it would seek to stand up for persecuted people such as the Kurds, the Uyghurs, the various minorities in Iran, the Christians in Pakistan and against countries, such as Nigeria, where they are regularly massacred. Yet, instead, where there is equality before the law, equal rights and opportunities for all citizens, and where the Arab population, both Muslim and Christian, has increased significantly—only in Israel, does CUNY by its arrogance and unaccountability, condemn and demonize America's ally. People from all over the world, immigrate to America for freedom; people from Arab and African countries escape to Israel to find freedom.
Wake up CUNY, fire Dean Setty. Bring justice back to the Law School.
Andria Spindel, Executive Director
Canadian Antisemitism Education Foundation