Reasonable people can, do, and should disagree about the appropriate solution to the tragic conflict between the Israeli and Palestinian people, and we passionately encourage public discussion and debate about such issues. However, we believe that the quarter-page paid advertisement by David Horowitz, published on page 6 of the Record’s October 29, 2002 issue under the headline “The Middle East Struggle Is Not About Right Against Right,” crosses the bounds of respectful and reasoned political discourse by blaming the Middle East conflict on “Arab and Islamic Jew-hatred [which] is the Nazi virus revived.” Such vile slanders against an entire people should be rejected just as vigorously as should all forms of anti-Semitism.
Hate speech and inflammatory rhetoric poison the public sphere, and subtly censor victims by frightening them from participating in the arena of public discourse. At a liberal arts college we can and should hope for better. Mr. Horowitz hopes to generate controversy in order to draw attention to his views and then to claim that he is being censored on political grounds. We will not play this game. We welcome all forms of constructive, respectful and sincere argument. But we reject all forms of hate speech and inflammatory rhetoric, whether directed against Jews or against Arabs and Muslims. We hope that the College community, and The Williams Record, will do the same.
Marc Lynch, Assistant Professor of Political Science
Rabbi Sigma Coran, Associate Chaplain
William Darrow, Professor of Religion
Rabbi Matthew Kraus, Associate Professor of Classics and Coordinator of the Program in Jewish Studies
Regina Kunzel, Professor of History and Academic Director, MCC
Nancy Levene, Assistant Professor of Religion
Rick Spalding, Chaplain to the College