An advocacy group said it was working with four pro-Israel Jewish professors in the City University of New York (CUNY) system who claimed they were being investigated by the university system for 'discrimination' against BDS and radical Islamist antisemitic activists on Sunday.
The group, called Students and Faculty for Equality at CUNY (SAFE CUNY), said it has “all the details,” but could not share said details as they were working “to help these [professors] get their ducks in a row in a few ways that could take weeks or more.”
The group added that it had already reported on the investigation into two of the professors earlier, but, since that report, an additional two professors were placed under investigation.
For those asking, yes, I am one of the four. I said from the very beginning that I may have been the first one they did this to, but I would be FAR from the last. And, here we are. A 1930s Germany style purge of faculty in Academia. https://t.co/6MCfCE5C3h— CUNY PROF (@CUNY_Prof) August 6, 2023
“For those asking, yes, I am one of the four,” tweeted Lax on Monday. “I said from the very beginning that I may have been the first one they did this to, but I would be FAR from the last. And, here we are. A 1930s Germany style purge of faculty in Academia.”
In February, JNS reported that two Jewish professors at Kingsborough Community College, part of the CUNY system, were being targeted by “retaliatory investigations” accusing them of “discrimination” and “harassment” after they complained of antisemitism on campus. The two were identified as Michael Goldstein - a business professor at the college - and Jeffrey Lax, chair of the school’s business department.
Antisemitism allegations continue around CUNY
CUNY has repeatedly been the center of controversy surrounding allegations of antisemitism by both students and faculty.
In May, CUNY Law School graduate Fatima Mohammed delivered a commencement address accusing Israel of “indiscriminately rain bullets and bombs on worshippers” and lauding CUNY’s efforts to allow students to “speak out against Israeli settler colonialism.” Mohammed’s address received loud applause and cheers from the audience.
In April, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) stated that it was “deeply concerned” after two professors who complained that students were being offered an opportunity to earn course credit by watching a film with antisemitic content were subsequently allegedly targeted with negative reviews on a professor rating website.
In March, SAFE CUNY published a 12-page report calling the university system the “most systemically antisemitic university in the US.”
Last year, the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) filed a lawsuit against CUNY, saying the university system ignored antisemitism.
Additionally, last year, six CUNY professors, including Lax and Goldstein, filed a federal civil rights lawsuit saying that they had been subjected to a hostile work environment on the basis of religion after the faculty union, known as the Professional Staff Congress, had passed a resolution condemning Israel and calling for an academic boycott of Israel.
Last year, the AMCHA Initiative stated that it had logged over 150 antisemitic incidents on 11 CUNY campuses since 2015, with over 60 incidents involving acts targeting Jewish students for harm, including vandalism, bullying, suppression of movement, and denigration.