Editorial note: Tufts University was one of twelve campuses on which the David Horowitz Freedom Center placed posters this Fall targeting the campus hate group Students for Justice in Palestine and exposing the financial and organizational ties that link the student organization to the anti-Israel terror group Hamas. At all twelve campuses, administrators ordered that the posters be immediately torn down, while proclaiming their ardent support for the principle of free speech. The following letter from David Horowitz exposes the absurdity and hypocrisy of this administrative stance and responds directly to accusations from two Tufts deans (posted below David’s letter) that the Freedom Center’s posters violated Tufts’ “community standards” and poster policy and “are not welcome on our campus.”
November 29, 2016
James M. Glaser
Dean of the School of Arts & Sciences, Tufts University
Jianmin Qu, Dean of the School of Engineering, Tufts University
I have just received your letter of November 14, conveying your “serious concerns regarding the posters placed on the Tufts University campus on October 19, 2016,” for which we took responsibility. The posters in question identify a hate group – Students for Justice in Palestine, which is sponsored by your institution. SJP calls for the destruction of the Jewish state, receives funding from the terrorist organization Hamas, and sponsors campus resolutions to boycott Israel, which liberals ranging from Larry Summers and Alan Dershowitz to Hillary Clinton have condemned as anti-Semitic. The statements in our posters are factual, or are reasonable opinions based on the facts.
Your “serious concerns” are summed up in two claims. First that “the posters in question violate our community standards” and, second, that they “violate our poster policy which requires notification and authorization by a university office or recognized student group prior to placing posters on campus.” You ask us in future to seek such permission.
Really. The two of you have already sent a letter to every member of the Tufts student body warning them that the university condemns our posters and that, “The university will be sending a statement to the posters’ sponsors in order to make clear that such materials are not welcome on our campus.” Now what student or student group, knowing that the university condemns these ideas, and has taken the extraordinary step of warning the entire student body that our ideas are unwelcome, would be willing to risk authorizing our posters? Which is why we took the step of putting up our posters without asking permission, since we are well aware that institutions like Tufts seek to be “safe places” for a politically correct orthodoxy and can be ruthless in acting to hermetically seal off dissenting ideas like ours.
I have read your terse email many times without being able to find a single reference to anything we actually said in our posters that might violate your community standards. Nor do you mention a single community standard that we might have violated. This is just another way in which you choose to show your contempt for individuals who express ideas that make you uncomfortable. And who wouldn’t be uncomfortable in your position when someone comes along to point out that you sponsor and support organizations that accuse Jews – falsely – of stealing Arab land, maintaining an “apartheid state,” and murdering innocent women and children, while giving full-throated support to the terrorists of Hamas?
Just to be duly diligent, I went up to the Tufts’ official website and found your community principles, prominent among which is the following statement: “Freedom of expression and inquiry are fundamental to the academic enterprise.” Too bad you and the Tufts administration have abandoned this principle, and too bad you lack the candor to admit it.
If you had a shred of integrity you would invite me to your campus to debate this issue. Instead you will no doubt go on suppressing our efforts, all the while pretending to support the free exchange of ideas.
Letter from Tufts’ Deans:
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