North Carolinians in Congress criticize campus unrest

North Carolina Senator Thom Tillis is advocating for expulsions and deportations, while Representatives Virginia Foxx and Richard Hudson are emphasizing the need for accountability.

U.S. Representative Kathy Manning, who was born to Jewish parents in Michigan just over 67 years ago, provided words of support amidst the escalating Middle Eastern conflict between Hamas and Israel in the United States.

North Carolina’s congressional delegation took to social media on Monday to address the wave of war-related protests happening on college campuses across the country. While these protests were particularly prominent at Ivy League institutions like Columbia University in New York City and Yale University in Connecticut, they were by no means limited to these locations.

Democratic congresswoman Manning from North Carolina took to social media in the afternoon to release a 68-second video. In her Passover message, she expressed her concerns over the current challenges faced by the Jewish community. Manning highlighted the ongoing conflict in Israel and the alarming increase in anti-Semitism both within the United States and globally. She acknowledged the difficulties faced by the Jewish people and their communities, including college campuses, emphasizing the need for unity and support during these trying times.

During her address, she expressed her desire for everyone to pause and reflect on the remarkable achievements, rich heritage, and significant impact that the Jewish community has had on the world.

Many people extended their well wishes to those observing the Passover, a meaningful Jewish holiday that commemorates the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. In the United States, the Passover started on Monday at sundown and will conclude on the evening of April 30th.

In the afternoon, Tillis, a Republican serving his second term, retweeted and provided his comments on a post regarding a “pro-terror mob” at the University of Michigan. The post stated that they were distributing flyers with the message “Freedom for Palestine means Death to America.” The tweet included photos of individuals standing under a banner that read “Encampment for Gaza! Divest now!” and showcased the flyer. Senator Tillis responded to this tweet.

In a recent post, Tillis expressed his firm stance on the matter, stating, “Foreign students who engage in spreading terrorist rhetoric should be deported, while American students who do the same should be expelled and transferred to the University of Tehran where their ideologies align.”

In 1979, there were dissident students who lost their lives at the University of Tehran during the lead-up to the Iranian revolution. This university has a reputation for being involved in political activism and promoting particular ideologies.

On Monday afternoon, Representative Foxx, a 10-term Republican, shared a statement from House Speaker Mike Johnson emphasizing the importance of standing against antisemitism and supporting Israel and the Jewish community. Speaker Johnson highlighted that as millions of Jews commemorate Jewish freedom worldwide, it serves as a reminder of the ongoing fight against antisemitism. Furthermore, he emphasized the significance of upholding the right of Jewish individuals to practice their religion safely.

In her capacity as the chairwoman of the House Education and Workforce Committee, Foxx expressed her concerns about Columbia University’s handling of certain issues. In a letter addressed to Columbia’s President, Dr. Minouche Shafik, and the co-chairpersons of the board of trustees, Claire Shipman and David Greenwald, Foxx emphasized that the university has fallen short in fulfilling its commitments. She further highlighted that Jewish students have been subjected to harassment, assault, threats, and intimidation, which has resulted in their decision to leave the campus for safer environments.

In addition, she expressed her concern about the individuals involved in the disturbance, which encompassed students, faculty, and staff. Specifically, she pointed out the groups namely Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, Columbia University Apartheid Divest, and Faculty and Staff for Justice in Palestine. These groups, according to her, have continuously and blatantly violated numerous university regulations, and in some instances, federal laws. She emphasized the need for the university to take decisive action and hold them responsible for their actions, suggesting that expulsion and termination of employment would be appropriate consequences considering the gravity of their offenses.

Hudson, a first-term Republican, expressed his alignment with Foxx’s letter on social media. He condemned the antisemitic hate that was being spread by pro-Hamas protestors at Columbia University, calling it “disgusting.” He urged the university’s leadership to take immediate action to halt these attacks on Jewish students or consider resigning.

U.S. Rep. Greg Murphy, R-N.C., expressed his disappointment on social media, stating that the events unfolding at Columbia University are truly disgraceful. He further criticized President Biden for failing to address the alarming rise of antisemitism directly, suggesting that this may be motivated by a desire to appease his political base.

The Democratic Party needs to take a strong stance against and eliminate the presence of anti-Semitic ideology within their ranks.

In a recent social media post, Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson expressed his strong disapproval of the growing wave of antisemitism within universities across the country. He highlighted the alarming situation at Columbia University, an institution that is expected to promote learning and inclusivity, but has unfortunately become a breeding ground for divisive hatred.

“Our educational institutions, ranging from prestigious universities like Harvard to local elementary schools, have a responsibility to cultivate environments that promote respectful dialogue and mutual understanding. Instead of perpetuating biases and fueling racial tensions, it is essential that we confront this issue directly and guide our academic communities towards a path that nurtures and empowers the next generation, rather than subjecting them to hatred and divisiveness.”

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