Tuesday, February 27, 2024

How anti-Palestinian racism led to a ‘crisis’ at TMU’s law school


Palestine Canada Toronto Metropolitan University MTU law school discrimination racism colonialism supremacy dehumanization education academia mainstream media incitement

Some recent media coverage of a petition in solidarity with Palestine portrayed student support as ‘pro-terror’

On October 20, 2023 — when Israel had already killed over 4,000 Palestinians in Gaza — one sixth of the law students at TMU’s Lincoln Alexander School of Law sent the Dean a petition expressing “solidarity with Palestine,” while also describing Hamas’ attacks on Israel as “war crimes.”

Then, on January 13, 2024 — with over 23,000 Palestinians killed — the Toronto Star reported on the “crisis” that the petition supposedly created (meanwhile, conservative media ran endless op-eds misrepresenting the students’ views, even claiming this group of mostly women students “endorsed rape”).

As the only professor at the law school vocally supporting the students/Palestine, I have first-hand insight into subtle yet significant flaws in the Star’s investigation. And because the Star was unwilling to publish either an op-ed or letter in response, I have, instead, published this essay with Ricochet, which has welcomed pro-Palestinian voices to its opinion pages.

First, the Star fails to adequately scrutinize outlandish interpretations projected onto the petition. The backlash against the students — which has included death threats, lost employment, potential expulsion, doxing, and harassment — is essentially predicated on the claim that their petition celebrates Hamas’ October 7 attack. This is false. The students call the attack a “war crime” (hardly an “endorsement”). Nor is the attack “justified” anywhere in their petition. Rather, it is explained, not excused, by Israel’s decades-long occupation and apartheid.

The students wrote that they “condemn any organization that only condemned Hamas’ recent war crimes killing 1,300 Israelis, but has been and/or remains silent on the historic and ongoing war crimes committed by Israel.”

They are not celebrating war crimes; they are critiquing western hypocrisy.  (more...)

How anti-Palestinian racism led to a ‘crisis’ at TMU’s law school

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