Thursday, May 02, 2024

The Uprising on College Campuses


My friend and lead Substacker Thomas Mills recently posted an essay saying he doesn't think the pro-Palestinian campus movement on college campuses has "legs" that will ultimately hurt Joe Biden. I'm not so sure about that, and I'm deeply troubled by so much of the resulting violence, including the spectacle of Congresswoman Virginia Foxx's making political hay out of claiming that there's rampant anti-semitism on college campuses and grilling poor inept college presidents, when it's rampant anti-Israeli militarism and anti-Netanyahu politics that have stirred up the college students. Foxx wants to tar college students, and college administrations, not stand up for Jews.

But I fervently hope Thomas Mills is right, that once summer sets in and college students go home or disperse to summer jobs or summer fun, the anti-Biden fervor over the Israeli campaign against Gaza will die down or go away altogether. I've seen it happen before, the reformist fever of April and May dissipate when summer sets in. Come fall semester there's a whole new freshman class not clued in to what was the hot topic last spring. But I'm not so sure this protest movement is as ephemeral as that. I know a lot of principled college students, and it's perhaps a different breed from what we've been used to. And good for them!

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