UC Riverside Chancellor Kim Wilcox chats with a former UCR student. (Yuriko Nakao/AP Images for UC Riverside) (Yuriko Nakao/AP Images for UC Riverside)
UC Riverside Chancellor Kim Wilcox
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University of California, Riverside (UCR) is offering a course that meets the U.S. State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism. Demand the school cancels it!

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An independent analysis has confirmed the greatest fears of 20 watchdog and advocacy organizations who had expressed concern that University of California, Riverside (UCR) is offering a course that meets the U.S. State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism.

Last month, the Salomon Center for American Jewish Thought reported that the 20 groups, whose priority issues include anti-Semitism and education, sent a letter to UCR Chancellor Kim Wilcox concerning “Palestinian Voices,” a student-initiated class whose syllabus reveals a different and more controversial title: “Palestine & Israel: Settler-Colonialism and Apartheid.”

An undergraduate student and Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) leader is teaching a one-credit course clearly intended to indoctrinate students to hate and act against Israel.

There is not a single session of the ten-week class that focuses on the Israeli and Jewish perspective. The readings are authored by well known Israel-haters such as Edward Said, Ilan Pappé, Rashid Khalidi, Steven Salaita and Ali Abunimah. The class will watch anti-Israel videos and films.

In addition, the class ignores important elements. The syllabus does not indicate there will be any examination of fundamental realities.

When UC Riverside Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox was asked via e-mail by concerned community members why the University offers a course which engages in political indoctrination, his reply was, in part, “The syllabus for the course was reviewed by a faculty committee which determined that the course meets University of California standards.”

In fact, the UC Regents Policy on Course Content prohibits political indoctrination in the classroom. Further, an independent analysis by a non-partisan, non-profit organization, Verity Educate, found the course to be politically-driven propaganda and indoctrination with no educational value.

The individuals charged with upholding the university’s rigorous academic standards determined that a course filled with blatant political propaganda and unbridled calls to political action, taught by an undergraduate activist, “meets University of California standards.” This is truly an embarrassment for anyone who holds a degree from the University of California.

Write to the University of California administrators:

Click here to write to UC President Janet Napolitano. Provost Aimee Dorr and the UC Regents will be copied in the email as well.

Firmly but courteously insist the UC system:
1) Issue a clear statement on whether the UCR course “Palestine & Israel: Settler-Colonialism and Apartheid” violates the Regents Policy on Course Content and what must be done if it is found to be in violation of University policy.
2) Issue clear guidelines to all UC Chancellors and academic senate leaders on how to enforce the Regents Policy on Course Content.

Thanks to the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) and the AMCHA Initiative.