Why does the “pro-Oren” petition have so many signatures?

So people have been excitedly pointing to the pro-Jehuda pro-Oren petition circulating around. The number of petition signers is huge – over 3000. In fact, it’s over the entire student population at Brandeis. What’s going on?

Well, it turns out that Adam Ross’s petition got the attention of one of the largest right-wing blogs in the country, with traffic in the hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of hits per day. These are the sorts of people who signed a letter “supporting” Brandeis.  Brandeis students: do you feel supported?

Don’t let the criminals at your institution disturb a friend of American from speaking.

in the 30’s the goons(a/k/a brown shirts) were able to shout down opposing views. don’t let it happen here.

Do not tolerate Anticemitism!

guess these days Brandeis (btw, who was the school named for?) is the school of self-hating Sonderkommando helpful idiot jews….like Jackie Saffir.

As the Leftists and jihadists march hand in hand China and Riussia chuckle while they annihilate Muslims at will.

The pro-terrorist crowd becomes more and more dangerous every day.

Radical politics inherently is anti-Semitic—and will require Jewish adherents to be self-hating. This really should not shock anyone in the least.”

Those kids belong in reform school … not the University.

When will you people stop with this Politcally Correct Nazism and remember that this is America.

I am shoocked by the close minded, anti-semitic reaction of the students at Brandeis.

The Arabs lost multiple wars trying to exterminate the Jews. They lost some land, too. Get over it.


to protest this statemen’s speech is simply nothing more than good old fashioned anti Semitism.

don’t give in to neo-antisemites!

Please do not allow antisemitism to grow in our institutions of higher education.

Brandeis is a Jewish university, as witnessed by the fact that it does not hold classes on major Jewish holidays. If some students dislike that aspect of the school’s philosophy then let them transfer to another school, preferably in an Arab country.

america is surely on the decline and we can look forward to jidhadists and leftists and rightist all vying for a slice of our totalitarian government and institutions.

The hateful propaganda espoused by the Palestinian student body is regretable and truly threatens our Democracy

So the petition is stuffed with right-wing outsiders and shouldn’t be taken seriously, fine. But a lot of those signers were clearly Jews. They claim to be embarrassed by my friends – I am embarrassed by these outsiders. I’m a patriotic Israeli citizen, practicing Jew, keep shabbat, keep kosher, etc. These people are calling me a nazi, anti-semite, “pro-terrorist”. My cousin was almost killed by terrorists. That’s hurtful.

So the “anti-Oren” group here at Brandeis worked very hard to articulate their position as not “anti-Oren” but instead “pro-Unity”. Read the open letter, read the facebook group. No matter what they say, no matter how carefully they make the case that the decision to bring Oren as Commencement speaker is troubling due to the special nature of commencement, these panicked defenders of gung-ho right-wing Jewry think of them as anti-semitic Palestinian radicals running amok and “violating free speech”.

The real frustration throughout all this is how the “pro-Oren” side seems to be willfully both vilifying and ignoring the actual stance of the “pro-Unity” side. I knew this would happen. That’s part of why inviting Oren to be a commencement speaker was a unwise move in the first place.


19 thoughts on “Why does the “pro-Oren” petition have so many signatures?”

  1. Guys, I said it in the other post and I’ll say it here.

    Everyone, please, chill out, be more respectful, no more personal attacks.

    I’ve been *this close* to deleting a lot of comments on this post and another one many times today. I don’t like doing that but if I have to keep a certain level of decorum up I will.

    I don’t care who the author is or what else is in the comment – if any more comments attack people, rather than ideas, I will delete them.

    Update In fact, on further reflection, I’ll go further and say this: If you post anonymously starting right now, you better be on your best behavior. J – this has not been your best behavior.

  2. @Jon

    Alright dude, seriously- you need to grow up. You had your say, but it’s done. You’ll have plenty of time to complain next year WHEN YOU ARE ACTUALLY GOING TO BE AT GRADUATION. Im sorry you are offended by Oren speaking, and you had your say…twice. Nothing came of it, and most people dont even care about Oren speaking in the first place. In the meantime, wildly complaining about Jehuda by calling him names wont do anything but further destroy the credibility of a movement that, at last count, was already in its dying days.

    But then again, maybe another protest/demonstration will help? I hear 3rd times a charm.

  3. @Anonymous – While I agree that Jehuda won’t change his mind, I can guarantee that Jehuda didn’t consider the issue “fairly and equally”. He’s a stubborn jackass so impressed with his own machismo he never reconsiders his stance or listens to others. This is why the Rose issue was such a debacle – he refused until it was way too late to backtrack from the decision. Even mollifying an enraged public by softening the impact of the decision would have helped, but no – Jehuda didn’t even make his cheap, unrepentant Obama joke until our reputation had been thoroughly trashed. This attitude goes for just about everything, but super-double-ultra-plus for anything concerning Israel.

    It’s because he can be such a fucking jerk who won’t listen – along with a sizeable section of the Jewish community that condemns all criticism of Israel as anti-Semitic – that this turmoil keeps going on.

  4. If anything Michael Oren has been able to stir up the level of student activism and discourse that has made Brandeis a renowned institution and he therefore makes a great commencement speaker.

  5. I realize the above post was poorly written. My bad.

    I know how to spell “week.”

    Also, the first half was meant to suggest that were a significant number of Brandeis students, not necessarily crazy, in the facebook group, as distinct from the petition which did make its way public.

    Apologies for doing such a lousy job writing.

  6. Are all the people in the facebook group right wingers? Nope. Many of them get labeled as radical liberals out in the real world. This is weak, Sahar. You gave a nice eloquent post earlier in the weak about the tension you feel as an Israeli and a Jew and also as someone who believe that Israel has committed wrongs. This post, by contrast, tries to dismiss an opinion merely because some of those who hold the opinion are loons. That’s logically flawed and doesn’t reflect well on the confidence you have in your own view.

  7. I don’t understand why this is still continuing. President Reinharz has listened to both “sides” of this issue fairly and equally and has made clear that he is not going to change his mind. He has made decisions in the past that others disagree with and has stuck by them. Students who are anti-oren/pro-unity have pled their case and protested twice. you win some, you lose some. It’s time to drop this issue and move on with your lives.

  8. Comrade, I think the post is inherently self-serving. “Why are there so many people who disagree with me???!1one” almost screams,”but i have the upper hand!”

  9. If Colin Powell were invited to speak at our commencement, do you think that selection would be met by anything resembling the level of reflexive denunciation we have seen w/r/t Michael Oren? Of course not. Let the man speak (about “success” or some similarly inane and innocuous topic), and agree to disagree on the IDF, Gaza, Israel, Hamas, Iran, etc. End of story.

  10. I think my favorite comment from clicking around on the petition might be:

    “why do you choose to condemn Israel at every instance when African countries have attacked by the Janjeed.? What are the real reasons for isolating Israel?It seem to me there are influnces of The merchant of Venice.”

    Damn that Shakespeare! Your iambic pentameter making anti-Semites of us all!

  11. I really can’t take this “Stop trying to shut down free speech” rhetoric anymore – it is nauseating.

  12. Ah, because everyone posting in the anti-Oren (oh, sorry- “pro-Unity”) petition/group are all fair-minded, logically thinking individuals. If you truly believe this Sahar, then apparently you have been visiting the wrong facebook group/not reading The Justice commentary.

    There are insane people on both sides of any discussion, especially ones involving Israel/Palestine. Im not sure why this should be news to you.

  13. The reason I take issue with the “pro-unity” argument is this: Why should learning stop at Commencement? Why should intellectual stimulation stop at Commencement? Just because there’s not going to be time for Q&A at Commencement doesn’t mean we can’t still engage, as a campus, on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

  14. I mean I see the point to this blog entry, but that is taken from the comments section which is literally just a cesspool of reactionary emotion. The actual blog entry is a lot more balanced in my opinion.

  15. I totally agree with what you’ve written above. I think that your selection of quotes matches the spirit of discourse on the supporting-pettition. Something that interests me is that the presentations of the petition numbers in the Hoot and Justice didn’t go into the obvious disparity between the two petitions and the cause with the landing of the supporting petition on pajamas media.

    But, you missed One of the things that I find particularly troubling with the signatories on that petition. The number of self-described professors, academics, and others with higher education that decry the efforts of the ‘anti-Oren’ group as antagonistic to ‘free speech’ is ridiculous! We haven’t advocated for never hearing Oren on campus. We’ve simply ask that he speak NOT AT COMMENCEMENT. Any other time would be tolerable as long as there was opportunity for dialog. arrrrgh. dur.

    Oh, and as of now the supporting-petition is at 4284…

Comments are closed.