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    Kenneth Marcus Tag

    Kenneth Marcus has been confirmed as Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the Department of Education. In that capacity, he will lead the Civil Rights Office, which was scandalized during the Obama administration, particularly on the issue of campus due process. The nomination had been opposed on a party-line vote, with Democrats siding with anti-Israel activist groups. See these posts for background:

    The Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee just voted 12-11, on a straight party line vote, to advance the nomination of Kenneth Marcus to become Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the Department of Education, the press office of Chair Lamar Alexander has confirmed. The vote took place after an determined assault on the nomination by anti-Israel activists. In such position, Marcus would lead the DOE Office for Civil Rights, a position which has a huge impact on higher education. It was the Obama-era OCR that imposed the disastrous "Dear Colleague" letter eviscerating due process in campus sexual assault tribunals. The Office also deals with issues of discrimination.

    Last week the U.S. Senate’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee concluded its hearings regarding the confirmation of Kenneth L. Marcus, President Trump’s pick for the position of Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights. We noted in a post back in October, when the White House first announced the nomination, that Marcus is extraordinarily qualified for the job and is an excellent pick for heading the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), Trump appoints attorney who combats antisemitism to key civil rights post.

    The American Studies Association (ASA), which is run by anti-Israel activists from academia, was the first (and only) significant-sized American faculty association to adopt the academic boycott of Israel. A few very small groups also have adopted the boycott, but attempts to reach larger organizations, such as the Modern Language Association, American Anthropological Association and American Historical Association, have failed. Legal Insurrection was at the forefront of covering ASA's December 2013 vote and the reaction, including the rejection of the boycott by over 250 university presidents and numerous major university organizations.

    The American Studies Association (ASA) was the first significant-sized faculty association to implement the academic boycott of Israel. A lawsuit just filed by several distinguished members challenges the ASA boycott, seeks damages against individual officers and National Council members who advanced the boycott, as well as injunctive relief, arguing that ASA exceeded its purpose defined under its constitution and bylaws. A copy of the Complaint is embedded at the end of this post. The lawsuit could serve as a model for litigation against other faculty organizations which have been hijacked by anti-Israel activists.

    On March 28, 2016, I gave a lecture at the University of Chicago Law School, When Does Anti-Israelism Turn Into Anti-Semitism. The lecture was sponsored by the Office of the Dean of Students and the Louis D. Brandeis Center, Inc. The video is embedded below and includes PowerPoint slides, which also are embedded below. After laying out the background on the rise of anti-Semitism tied to the gross demonization of Israel by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, I discussed the Sharansky 3-D Test, and the State Department guidelines, as to when anti-Zionism crosses into anti-Semitism. I then used various images as a Rorschach test. Here are a couple of the images (all the images are in the video and slide show). Slide - Carlos Latuff Octopus
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