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Full Version: Just how easy it is to be accused of anti-semitism
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Quote:A half-listening student, a hypersensitive campus and the speed at
which gossip travels on the Internet conspired to create a very
damaging game of broken telephone for one York University professor
this week.

Cameron Johnston, who has been teaching at York for more than 30
years, has been forced to respond to allegations that he made
anti-Semitic remarks in a lecture on Monday afternoon after a student
misunderstood his comments and began sending emails to Jewish groups
and the media.

Johnston was giving his introductory lecture to Social Sciences 1140:
“Self, Culture and Society,” when he explained to the nearly 500
students that the course was going to focus on texts, not opinions,
and despite what they may have heard elsewhere, everyone is not
entitled to their opinion.

“All Jews should be sterilized” would be an example of an unacceptable
and dangerous opinion, Johnston told the students.

He didn’t notice Sarah Grunfeld storm out. Grunfeld, a 22-year-old in
her final year at York, understood Johnston’s example to be his
personal opinion.

She contacted Oriyah Barzilay, the president of Hasbara at York — an
Israel advocacy group on campus — who then sent a press release to
media and other Jewish community groups calling for Johnston to be

Blogs and Facebook groups picked it up, and in a few hours the
allegations spread within the city’s Jewish community, albeit mostly

Sensitivities around anti-Semitism are particularly heightened at
York, which has a large Jewish population and a history of toxic
relations between supporters and critics of Israel on campus.

“I’m terribly upset,” Johnston said Tuesday. “I’m very proud of the
fact that in the history of my teaching career I’ve stood for the best
values of what constitutes a meaningful human community.”

Johnston, who is Jewish, said his religion likely influenced his
choice of words, why he used “this example of a completely
reprehensible opinion” with historical precedent.

During the Second World War, Nazi scientists experimented with mass
sterilization on Jewish prisoners in concentration camps.

“I think it’s a very good thing that people are sensitive to this kind
of remark, and I think it’s a very good thing that someone would
respond immediately and deal with it if they thought that they heard
an anti-Semitic comment,” Johnston said. “But in this case, it’s a

The irony for Johnston is that he was trying to teach his students
that ideas have consequences.

“So I’m pretty shocked to find the consequences — what I was talking
about in lecture — is that I get seen as an example of prejudice.”

Grunfeld said Tuesday she may have misunderstood the context and
intent of Johnston’s remarks, but that fact is insignificant.

“The words, ‘Jews should be sterilized’ still came out of his mouth,
so regardless of the context I still think that’s pretty serious.”

Grunfeld also expressed skepticism that Johnston was in fact Jewish.

Asked directly by a reporter whether she believes Johnston is lying,
she was unclear.

“Whether he is or is not, no one will know,” she said. “. . . Maybe he
thought because he is Jewish he can talk smack about other Jews.”

Sheldon Goodman, GTA co-chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish
Affairs, which speaks on behalf of the city’s organized Jewish
community, called the incident “a very unfortunate misunderstanding.”

“This event is an appropriate reminder that great caution must be
exercised before concluding a statement or action is anti-Semitic,” he
shit like this is what feeds their enemies. H girl is fairly dumb witted t no know that. Keep it up. And she may veryw ell recieve some real deal anti sematism in her day
at dork no less

Sarah Grunfeld should be sterilized.
Thankfully, the situation has been resolved justly (no one wrongfully punished). I hope this teaches readers not to judge rashly.
Is she had used the "Jew or not Jew iphone app all of this trouble could have been avoided.
Poor girl. It's great that the media is at the ready when it comes to situations like the one posted above.
“This event is an appropriate reminder that great caution must be exercised before concluding a statement or action is anti-Semitic,” he said.

"..but not unless a lousy goy says it!"
(09-23-2011, 01:53 AM)vakarian Wrote: [ -> ]“This event is an appropriate reminder that great caution must be exercised before concluding a statement or action is anti-Semitic,” he said.

"..but not unless a lousy goy says it!"

This. Several years ago, Senator Howard Metzenbaum of Ohio made a statement at a meeting of Rabbinics. It was published in the local Jewish press. He said, 'Do not let the forces of evil take over this country and turn it into a Christian nation'. A TradCat friend of mine republished the comment, with proper attribution. He was denounced as an anti-Semitic Nazi. No one denied that Metzenbaum had made the remark, but it was 'anti-Semitic' to tell the goyim about it!
Isn't it a compliment?

"Pretty dress you are wearing tonight dear."

"That's anti-Semitic."
The Jews at my university are keen to cry anti-Semitism at every opportunity. They're not victims in the world anymore; they really need to stop trying to hold onto the victim image.
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