Posted by on November 21, 2023 2:41 pm
Categories: News Washington Examiner

Virginia attorney general demands colleges protect Jewish students from antisemitism

Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares speaks during a watch party for Danny Diggs, candidate for the Virginia Senate 24th District, on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2023, at the City Center Holiday Inn in Newport News, Virginia. Kendall Warner/The <i>Virginian-Pilot</i> via AP

Virginia attorney general demands colleges protect Jewish students from antisemitism

Asher Notheis November 21, 01:35 PM November 21, 01:35 PM Video Embed

Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares asked Tuesday for college presidents to speak out against antisemitism, saying that “your silence is not going unnoticed.”

The Republican was discussing a recent letter he had sent to all public Virginia college and university presidents, noting that many Jewish students on college campuses fear for their safety. It comes after several college campuses, including some in Virginia, have been the location of pro-Palestinian rallies, leading to safety concerns from Jewish students.


“My challenge to these college presidents were in 2017, at the infamous ‘Unite the Right’ in Virginia, pretty much every college president on the campus around the country condemned what happened in ’17 as antisemitism, rightly so,” Miyares said on Fox News’s Fox and Friends. “Well, I would argue right now, nationwide, you are having multiple equivalent of Unite the Right rallies happening every week in this country, people openly advocating for the genocide of the Jewish people in Israel. And so these college presidents, you also have a First Amendment voice as well, and your silence is not going unnoticed at this critical time.”

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Roughly one week after the terrorist group Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, George Mason University in Virginia was home to one of multiple pro-Palestinian rallies. University officials had extra police and security available to make sure the demonstration was peaceful, according to FOX 5.

Miyares’s letter to state university presidents last week noted the First Amendment does not protect speech directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and that protesters at pro-Palestinian rallies typically chant, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” That statement, Miyares claimed, is “a call for the complete destruction of Israel and denial of its right to exist.”

“Conveniently, these protesters never explain what would happen to the eight million Jews who live between the river and the sea, leading to the inescapable conclusion that the protesters are calling for a second Holocaust against innocent men, women, and children,” Miyares said in the letter.


Last month, Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R-VA) issued Executive Directive Six, which allows Virginia State Police to operate at a heightened state to identify quickly any threats made against places of worship and religious communities. It also increases safety measures for places of education, requiring public colleges and universities to submit updated safety plans to the Virginia Center for School and Campus Safety.

Youngkin explained in a televised appearance that since Hamas’s attack on Israel, he had received growing concerns from members of the Jewish community over antisemitism, along with concerns from the Muslim community over backlash on the Israel attack.

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