AMCHA’S Response to Antisemitic Activity at Drexel University

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1. A Swastika found near an Israeli flag

  • 5/11/15 – INCIDENT: A recent incident on campus involved a swastika and the word “Jew” written near an Israeli flag displayed outside the dorm room of a Jewish student. President Fry issues two statements on this antisemitic incident, one on May 13, and an excellent statement issued on May 17 which stated, “The swastika is not a symbol of protest or provocation. It is a symbol of antisemitism. There is no circumstance in which its use in response to an expression of Jewish identity can be construed as anything but a reference to historical attempts to threaten and even destroy the Jewish people. There is no place in our Drexel community for any person who would make use of this antisemitic symbol, knowing its historical and cultural significance.”
  • 5/19/15 – AMCHA’S RESPONSE: The AMCHA Initiative and 25 other organizations commend Drexel University President via email for his actions following the vandalism, specifically for his strong statements identifying this as an antisemitic act and condemning it as such: “The swastika is not a symbol of protest or provocation. It is a symbol of antisemitism. There is no circumstance in which its use in response to an expression of Jewish identity can be construed as anything but a reference to historical attempts to threaten and even destroy the Jewish people. There is no place in our Drexel community for any person who would make use of this antisemitic symbol, knowing its historical and cultural significance.” AMCHA goes on to suggest several courses of action including “formally adopting the U.S. State Department’s definition of antisemitism” in order to have Drexel serve as a model for deterring anti-Jewish acts.