Antisemitic lecturer invited, then uninvited, at San Diego State University

In the past, Ava Muhammad, a spokesperson for the organization Nation of Islam led by antisemitic minister Louis Farrakhan, referred to Jews as 'blood-sucking parasites.'

View of San Diego. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
View of San Diego.
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
A lecturer who in the past referred to Jews as "godless... blood-sucking parasites [that] sell us alcohol, drugs, depraved sex, and every other type of low-life thing," was recently included in the list of speakers for a program on the topic of US reparations for slavery at San Diego State University, the Los Angeles Times has reported.
The event was proposed by graduate students who received funding for $68,000 to organize it, as announced in the university newsletter on December 18, according to the LA Times.
Among the five speakers suggested by Terry Sivers was Ava Muhammad, a spokesperson for the organization Nation of Islam led by antisemitic minister Louis Farrakhan.
Muhammad made the disparaging remarks in a 2017 speech whose clip was widely circulated on social media and was denounced, among others, by the Anti-Defamation League.
"This shows that the committees, faculty and administrators who approved this proposal either did so without vetting the summit's speakers or they did the vetting and approved them anyway," Peter Herman, an SDSU literature professor, told the Californian newspaper. "At the very least, they were irresponsible."
The day after the newsletter was sent, Herman contacted some university administrators to inquire about the inclusion of Muhammad in the program, claiming that he was working on an article about the episode for a local publication.
"In some cases, speakers may be invited to speak on a specific topic of interest despite having viewpoints in other areas that are not in alignment with the values and beliefs of our community," SDSU told him in an email, as quoted by the LA Times.
"This does not mean, however, that speech intended to denigrate or dehumanize others based on their backgrounds or social identities is consistent with SDSU's values — which it is not," it added.
Later, as outrage mounted, the university first announced that it would consult with Jewish leaders on how to handle the matter, and finally said that Sivers decided to revise the speakers' list and that SDSU supported the decision.

"The student's proposed speaker list previously included those who have espoused anti-Semitic rhetoric in the past. We strongly reject antisemitic and other disparaging messages and actions. SDSU will offer support to the student organizer to ensure that the original basis for the event — a critical exploration of slavery and reparations — can proceed," SDSU said in a statement.