Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Mysteriously, MIT Thinks It Can Stop Campus Antisemitism Without Addressing Whether it's Wrong to Say "Intifada Revolution" and "From the River to the Sea"

MIT President can't even bring herself to name which side violated MIT policies

November 15, 2023 - The President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sally Kornbluth, released a public statement to the community, including parents of students and alumni, that attempted - and pathetically failed - to address recent events on campus that have made national headlines and TV and Internet news reports. In her cover email letter, she claimed she was going to include a written update that "clears up some false rumors and answers some common questions about what happened." However, nowhere in the written update does Kornbluth identify who did what unauthorized activity that resulted in a near melee in Lobby 7, the main access to campus, and ended up with some students referred for potential disciplinary action. Therefore, very few facts ended up related.

As an aside, it was the Coalition Against Apartheid (CAA), who organized the "die-in" in Lobby 7 with the consequent megaphone chants calling for "From the River to the Sea" and "Intifada." It was CAA who held the protest after being told by MIT administrators that it was not allowed in that space. A counter-protesta rose when no action was taken against the CAA anti-Israel protest. However, the pro-Israel protestors left Lobby 7 when told to do so. It was CAA protestors who stayed past the deadline finally imposed by MIT administrators and CAA protestors who ended up being referred for discipline. It was CAA who posted on their website the day following the Hamas massacre in Israel that all of the brutality was fully justified. Just to actually outline some facts.

But Kornbluth was not willing to name names. Furthermore, she's not willing to "take sides." In her videotaped speech, she says, "let me emphasize: I am not adjudicating these issues – the whole world is grappling with them."

It was extremely odd, then, when Kornbluth concluded her speech with the information that her administration was going to address the "real" antisemitism that threatens to "poison our community."

How does Kornbluth intend to address antisemitism if she is not willing to admit that it is wrong to call for Intifada, a program of the random murder of Israeli Jewish citizens via suicide bombings, stabbings and any other means? How can Kornbluth reduce antisemitism on campus if she is not willing to say that "From the River to the Sea" is a call for genocide or, at best, ethnic cleansing of the current Jewish state of Israel?

Clearly, the attempt to address antisemitism will be as inept and empty as Kornbluth's lack of action in addressing the violence on campus. Instead of enforcing tangible rules, she has, since October 10, done nothing but release statement after statement feebly begging the MIT community to commit to "treating each other with decency and respect."

I suppose Kornbluth is using the same ideology as George Soros and George Gascon. Simply asking people to do better and be good people should create a perfect society. There's no need for policemen or enforcement of laws. Everyone will simply listen to her call for civility and lay down arms.

Perhaps Kornbluth should go to Gaza and preach this same philosophy. It would be interesting to see how it works out for her.


Reader Comments(1)

AndAnotherThing writes:

The reporter of this article needs to take a course in free speech and the First Amendment. Without taking a side in the Israel-Palestine matter, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled on multiple occasions and as recently as 2017 that it is a violation of the First Amendment to censor speech based on viewpoint. The First Amendment exists specifically to protect offensive speech. Why? Because no one objects to polite speech. George Orwell, author of 1984, a book that the reporter should read, once said, If liberty has any meaning at all, it is the right to tell people what they don't want to hear. If the protestors invaded instructors' personal space or broke campus rules on where they could protest, then charge them with that misconduct, but you cannot censor or punish them simply because you don't like what they have to say. What happens when your message is the one someone doesn't like? Fight ideas you don't like with greater ideas and more speech.