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    Law students in huge show of support for UT-Austin Israel Studies Prof. attacked by BDS

    Law students in huge show of support for UT-Austin Israel Studies Prof. attacked by BDS

    Statement of support on behalf of several hundred students from 18 law schools.

    The disruption of an event hosted by UT-Austin Israel Studies Professor Ami Pedahzur by anti-Israel students from the UT-Austin Palestine Solidarity Committee continues to reverberate.

    The disruption was followed up by a slick media campaign targeting Prof. Pedahzur, including a video edited to make the perpetrators (the anti-Israel protesters) look like the victims.  Part of that smear campaign was a “civil rights” complaint filed by the students with the University.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=46W4S3lr9HU

    For those of you new to this story, here are links to our prior posts:

    Fortunately, there has been increasing public support for Prof. Pedahzur, including a statement from the Dean of the UT-Austin College of Liberal Arts both supporting Prof. Pehahzur professionally and recognizing the disruption of the event as a violation of academic freedom:

    ….. Although reviews are still ongoing, I wish to emphasize that there are places on campus for responsibly discussing disagreements. Disruption of a visiting scholar’s invited academic lecture violates principles of academic freedom and free speech that are crucial to our mission as a great university.

    Unrelated to that, a Petition was launched by a UT-Austin group has over 3000 signatures as of this writing.  (You can sign the Petition here.)

    In the latest development, today The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law has issued a Press Release offering support for Prof. Pedahzur from 18 law school chapters representing several hundred law students:

    This morning, students from eighteen Brandeis Center law student chapters issued a statement in support of Dr. Ami Pedahzur, an Israel Studies professor at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Pedahzur had been assailed by anti-Israel activists for his effort to host an academic presentation on the Israeli Defense Forces.

    The full statement can be found below:

    November 25, 2015

    On behalf of 18 chapters representing several hundred law students of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law (LDB), we support Professor Ami Pedahzur, Director of the Institute for Israeli Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, and urge the University to address the upsetting disruption of free speech and expression that occurred on its campus on Friday, November 13.. Specifically, an anti-Israel group, the Palestine Solidarity Committee, disrupted an event hosted by Dr. Pedahzur, titled “The Origin of a Species: The Birth of the Israeli Defense Forces’ Military Culture,” featuring Stanford professor Dr. Gil-Li Vardi.

    At the event, the student disruptors showed no interest in engaging in dialogue or listening to the speaker. Rather, they argued that they refuse to talk to Israelis because they are all war criminals. They chanted things like, “Long live the Intifada!” and “We want [19]‘48, we don’t want two states!”

    It is incredibly disappointing and frightening that the protestors sought to intimidate and silence this speaker rather than engage with or challenge her ideas. Recently, there has been a trend of anti-Israel groups across the country attacking the free speech rights of pro-Israel speakers.

    Last week, LDB wrote to UT Austin President Gregory L. Fenves, urging him to remedy the situation. In his response letter, President Fenves wrote, “I encourage you to work productively with me to help promote a free and respectful exchange of ideas on campus.”

    The actions of PSC go against the core aims of universities to foster open learning and a diverse spectrum of ideas. This is an opportunity for the University of Texas to be a nationwide leader in condemning attacks on free speech and standing up for what is right.

    As both law students and members of LDB chapters, we support Professor Pedahzur, and urge the University of Texas to publicly show support for Professor Pedahzur, to help promote a free and respectful exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that this disruption of free speech and expression does not recur in the future.

    Signed:

    Cornell University School of Law, LDB Chapter
    Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, LDB Chapter
    Brooklyn Law School, LDB ChapterChicago Kent College of Law, LDB Chapter
    Chicago Kent College of Law, LDB Chapter
    City University of New York (CUNY) Law School, LDB Chapter
    DePaul University College of Law, Law LDB Chapter
    Emory University School of Law, LDB Chapter
    Loyola University of Chicago School of Law, LDB Chapter
    Northeastern University School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of California – Berkeley School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of Chicago Law School, LDB Chapter
    University of Minnesota Law School, LDB Chapter
    University of Pennsylvania School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of St. Thomas School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of Virginia (UVA) School of Law, LDB Chapter
    University of Washington School of Law, LDB Chapter
    William Mitchell College of Law, LDB Chapter

    Prof. Pedahzur is not out of the legal woods yet. He still needs to respond to and defeat the “civil rights” complaint filed against him with the University.

    http://www.twcnews.com/tx/austin/news/2015/11/18/pro-palestine-ut-students-claim-civil-rights-were-violated.html

    [UT-Austin anti-Israel protesters with Attorney Brian McGiverin]

    The anti-Israel students tried to use Alinksy’s Rule No. 13 against Prof. Pedahzur:

    “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.

    These public expressions of support show that the tactic is failing.

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    Comments

    It’s about time. Time for college students to take back their rights from Marxists professors & student agitators who are the root cause of BDS on campuses and SJWs in general.

    I will not bake a cake for anyone I don’t want to. No matter what.
    I will choose goods I buy or avoid, not a group of Jew hating transmuslim/socialist racists.


     
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    Estragon | November 26, 2015 at 4:49 am

    The tide may be turning, finally, slowly but surely, against the forces of PC propaganda and leftist thought-policing on campus.

    We could speed things along by cutting taxpayer subsidies to institutions, faculties, and students, and returning higher education to a free market basis. The value of the leftism is not great, and the market could prove it in short order.


     
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    Milhouse | November 27, 2015 at 5:49 am

    The Algemeiner reports that Prof Pedahtzur has had to resort to wearing a disguise on campus, and to take other security measures, because the university is not providing him with protection.

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