“It’s time for the adults to take over, and that includes law firms looking for graduates to hire.”
Steven Davidoff Solomon is trying to hold these students accountable. There is a lot of this going around right now and it’s encouraging.
He writes at the Wall Street Journal:
Don’t Hire My Anti-Semitic Law Students
I teach corporate law at the University of California, Berkeley, and I’m an adviser to the Jewish law students association. My students are largely engaged and well-prepared, and I regularly recommend them to legal employers.
But if you don’t want to hire people who advocate hate and practice discrimination, don’t hire some of my students. Anti-Semitic conduct is nothing new on university campuses, including here at Berkeley.
Last year, Berkeley’s Law Students for Justice in Palestine asked other student groups to adopt a bylaw that banned supporters of Israel from speaking at events. It excluded any speaker who “expressed and continued to hold views or host/sponsor/promote events in support of Zionism, the apartheid state of Israel, and the occupation of Palestine.” Nine student groups adopted the bylaw. Signers included the Middle Eastern and North African Law Students Association, the Queer Caucus and the Women of Berkeley Law.
The bylaw caused an uproar. It was rightly criticized for creating “Jew-free” zones. Our dean—a diehard liberal—admirably condemned it but said free-speech principles tied his hands. The campus groups had the legal right to pick or exclude speakers based on their views. The bylaw remains, and 11 other groups subsequently adopted it.
You don’t need an advanced degree to see why this bylaw is wrong. For millennia, Jews have prayed, “next year in Jerusalem,” capturing how central the idea of a homeland is to Jewish identity. By excluding Jews from their homeland—after Jews have already endured thousands of years of persecution—these organizations are engaging in anti-Semitism and dehumanizing Jews. They didn’t include Jewish law students in the conversation when circulating the bylaw. They also singled out Jews for wanting what we all should have—a homeland and haven from persecution.
The student conduct at Berkeley is part of the broader attitude against Jews on university campuses that made last week’s massacre possible. It is shameful and has been tolerated for too long.
It’s time for the adults to take over, and that includes law firms looking for graduates to hire.
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