This summer has seen a debate over whether the UC Board of Regents should adopt a controversial definition of anti-Semitism that categorizes certain speech critical of Israeli policies as anti-Semitic.
Students for Justice in Palestine at UCLA would like to correct some mischaracterizations about our organization that have surfaced in campus discourse and the work of outside publications reporting on internal student government issues, specifically in regards to the offensive Judicial Board interview of Rachel Beyda.
The Daily Bruin ran two op-eds Friday in the run-up to the landmark University of California Student Association vote in favor of divesting UC funds from companies enabling Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories.
Earlier this year, UCLA students asked student government members not to take lobbying trips hosted by bigoted and discriminatory groups. In a strange intervention into campus politics, this summer Los Angeles City Council member Bob Blumenfield proposed a resolution denouncing this pledge. At a time when we are flooded with other problems, it is curious that Blumenfield has asked the City Council to spend its energy meddling in what appears to be a settled issue.
The movement to stop the University of California system from investing in corporations that violate Palestinian human rights reached an important milestone on May 28. After hours of public comment and senate deliberation, the student government at the UC Santa Cruz voted by a 22-14 margin to endorse divestment.
Last year, lobbying organizations spent a total of $3.2 billion to influence the U.S. Congress, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. The effects of this lobbying are widely understood: Both Democrats and Republicans concur that these interest groups exercise too much power over our nation’s government, and many believe that their influence has corrupted our nation’s institutions.
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