Washington: We are all here to stand against hate. This is the sentiment at the White House celebration of Chaunaka, including the signing of an executive order targeting Anti-Semitism on college campuses.
The orders will allow the government to interpret Judaism as both a race or nationality and religion under federal law. This allows the Department of Education to take action against Anti-Semitism on college campuses, administration officials said.
The order does threaten to withhold federal funding for colleges and universities that fail to combat discrimination on their campuses
Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Federal Department of Education can withhold funding from college or educational programs it believes are practicing anti-Semitic hate. It does not eliminate college discourse or discussion of religion, but it does mean that persons at a celebration, such as Chaunaka, will remain unmolested by anti-Semites. The Executive Order is in response to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against the Israeli government. The movement is prominent on some campuses, leaving some Jewish students feeling targeted.
President Trump has long been a supporter of Israel and the Jewish religion. Some of his actions on behalf of the state have included recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights, moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, and as pointed out at the ceremony today, stepping back from the US – Iran nuclear deal.
The President also stood up to Democrats Ilhan Omar and Rashid Tlaib when they attempted to visit Israel in order to grandstand against the country on behalf of the BDS movement. (Trump urges barring Omar and Tlaib, and Israel agrees)
Amongst the luminaries at the event are First Lady Melania Trump, Ivanka and Jared Kushner, Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, Democrat Allan Dershowitz, many politicians and many faith leaders.
Pastor Robert Jeffress saying that Trump is “the most pro-faith president in history” and that God will “bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse Israel.” Jeffress added that Trump is on the “right side of God.”
Alan Dershowitz, saying there had been “no more important event in” the six decades he’s spent on college campuses “to turn universities away from being bastions of hatred and discrimination than this executive order being signed today.”
“It is a game changer,” he added. “One of the most important events in the 2,000-year battle against anti-Semitism.”
But the stars of the event were 102 year old Rosalee Glasser, a holocaust survivor and a young man who asked to celebrate the first day of Chaunaka at the White House.
Standing next to the First Lady, Austin Polaski (sp) of San Francisco, in a Trump Yamulka, his admiration for the President and happiness at being there – you can see it all in his eyes. A future leader, indeed.