Hillel students protest Irvine chancellor


Jewish students protested the planned participation of the University of California, Irvine chancellor at a Hillel conference.

In a letter sent last Thursday to Hillel President Wayne Firestone, 41 current and former students objected to the appearance of Michael Drake at The Summit, which is being held Monday to Wednesday in Washington.

Drake is slated to appear on the opening day at a session titled “Fostering a More Civil Society.”

His invitation has come under fire over allegations that he has been unresponsive to claims by Jewish students at Irvine that they have been subjected to a pattern of anti-Semitic threats and rhetoric.

“Jewish students at UCI have been subjected to hateful anti-Semitic programs and speakers on a regular basis, and yet Chancellor Drake and his administration have never once condemned any of it,” said the letter. “In fact, we understand that, according to Chancellor Drake, anti-Semitism is not even a problem on his campus. In light of his conduct, we believe that Chancellor Drake has not earned the right to be a speaker at a Hillel event focusing on how to create an environment that is civil, respectful and tolerant.”

The students held a meeting with Firestone in Washington prior to the summit to air their concerns.

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