The Asian Pacific American Coalition would like to explain the concerns regarding Chancellor Robert Jones’s Massmail and voice our support for Students for Justice in Palestine.
On October 9, 2019, Chancellor Jones released a Massmail to the student body essentially denouncing a multicultural advocate’s presentation on Palestine for its supposedly anti-Semitic arguments. Chancellor Jones conflated anti-Zionist sentiments conveyed in the student’s presentation as anti-Semitic ones, which is misleading and potentially harmful. Students for Justice in Palestine explain in their statement,
“Anti-Semitism is the hostility to or prejudice against Jewish people. It is constructed and fueled by white supremacy […] Zionism is a political ideology that seeks to maintain an artificial Jewish majority in historic Palestine through the systematic occupation and disposition of Palestinians’ land and livelihoods. As an ideology, anti-Zionism is rooted in a critique of the state of Israel, not any racial, ethnic, or religious group.”
As a result, to conflate anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism (denouncing criticism of Zionism as prejudice towards Jewish people) disrespects and defaces efforts toward the Palestinian people. Additionally, this misunderstanding unfairly antagonizes Jewish people and negatively affects our Jewish students, with whom we also stand in solidarity.
We, as the Asian Pacific American Coalition Board, support the re-education of our student body on this issue and believe that no person is free until everyone is.
APAC Board 2019-2020
Established in 1993, the Asian Pacific American Coalition was founded on the principles of giving Asian American students a voice in the face of adversary. Since then, we have accomplished much and expanded our vision to include Asian international organizations.