Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School
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The student news site of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School

The Lion's Tale

The student news site of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School

The Lion's Tale

The student news site of Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School

The Lion's Tale

Lt. Col. Avi Levi presents on the Israel Air Defense System.
JDS hosts speakers from Israeli Embassy
Mia Forseter, Sports Editor • May 22, 2024

Following Yom HaZikaron and Yom Ha'atzmaut, CESJDS invited three speakers from the Israeli embassy to further inform students about Israel and...

Joe Vogel speaking out to the community. Photo from https://www.joevogel.org/
It takes a village
Adam Salomon, Reporter • May 22, 2024

While, door-to-door campaigning, Junior Rafi Seigel knocks on the door of a family household in Maryland’s sixth district, asking them to vote...

Sophomore Oliver Silver teaches his grandparents what hes been learning in math this year.
Dor L' Dor Day
Gila Safra, Reporter • May 22, 2024

Summer vs. winter
Summer vs. winter
Eliana Abrams and Maya GreenblumMay 20, 2024

Lions hold up banner after defeating Sandy Spring in the championship.
Varsity softball wins championship two years in a row
Tyler Portnoy, Reporter • May 19, 2024

Crack. The bat hits the ball and sophomore Carrine Shemesh sprints towards first base as sophomore Eliana Wolf crosses the plate, scoring the...

The baseball team has two managers who can be found at the majority of the baseball teams games, Jordan Levy (‘24) and junior Josh Berl.
All bases covered: managers support the baseball team
Vivi Ducker, Features Editor • May 17, 2024

When in attendance at any of the CESJDS varsity baseball team’s games this year, next to the players on the bench, the baseball team managers....

Opinion: Colleges need to support Zionist students

At+the+college+fair+on+April+7%2C+Pitzer+College+representatives+boasted+about+their+Students+Justice+for+Palestine+%28SJP%29+club+to+a+Jewish+student.++
Flickr
At the college fair on April 7, Pitzer College representatives boasted about their Students Justice for Palestine (SJP) club to a Jewish student.

On April 7, I attended the Washington Area Independent Schools College Fair, which was co-sponsored by CESJDS along with other schools from the DC area. I expected that this fair would be a safe space for me, as a Jew and a Zionist, but I was met with quite the opposite from some schools. 

As I was walking around the fair, I stopped at the table of Pitzer College, where I asked the school’s representative about the social life on the campus. The representative explained that students at Occidental were very into social justice, and she mentioned that Claremont Students Justice for Palestine (SJP) was the most popular club on campus. She continued to brag to me about how Pitzer students were proud to have pulled all of its study abroad programming in Israel. 

Not only did I find it off-putting that the Pitzer representative was seemingly bragging about their having disassociated with a country that I feel so connected to, but I was in utter shock that she was advertising the organization SJP on their campus. A website run by the Pitzer SJP refers to Israel as an apartheid state, and accuses Israel of genocide. The club’s Instagram account also refers to the current Israel-Hamas conflict as a genocide, and has no mention of the Israeli hostages. The fact that Pitzer is allowing such untrue hate speech to be present on their campus is repulsive. 

After this disheartening encounter, I decided to try my luck at a similar liberal-arts style college: Occidental College. In one of my first questions when talking to the schools representative, I inquired if I, as a Zionist, would feel comfortable at Occidental. Instead of the answer I was hoping for, the school’s representative said it would be tough. Although he did say I would be okay on the campus and reassured that I would experience no violence, I had trouble believing him, and suddenly felt discouraged from the college fair as a whole. 

After hearing this, I did more research and learned that there was an instance of a swastika being drawn on the door of a Jewish student at Occidental. Additionally, one known student has chosen to leave Occidental after Oct. 7, and I can’t blame her. To be told it would be difficult for me on a campus because of my zionism by a college representative was not only shocking, but frankly a perpetration of anti-semtism. By saying this, this representative not only made me feel marginalized as a Jewish student. Although I appreciate this representative’s honesty, the solution to a problem like this is not to sit idly by and allow it to happen. 

Colleges should not be promoting, or even allowing, such blatant antisemitism on their campuses. Even if schools are not supporting anti-Israel actions, being silent is not any better. What I saw from Pitzer College and Occidental College on April 7 was a representation of how these institutions are allowing antisemitism to occur on their campuses. 

I am still in shock about the experience I had at this college fair, but these schools are not unique. According to Hillel, there have been 1,278 reported incidents of antisemitism on college campuses since Oct. 7, with schools across the country affected. 

As a community we must rise against this hatred. As my grade starts the college process, I believe it is crucial we apply to the schools we want and not let hatred be a deterrent. Instead of quitting and picking a school based on the fact that we feel more comfortable there, I encourage you to hold these schools accountable for the horrific things occurring on their campuses. 

Universities are not required to support Israel, however it is a part of their job as educational institutions to make sure their campuses are safe for students of all belief systems. To do so, they must stand up against antisemitic incidents by calling out and punishing those who partake in these incidents. 

We as a Jewish community must hold schools like Pitzer College and Occidental College accountable from the hatred being stimulated on their campuses. You can do so by emailing university presidents or donating to their Hillels. They have a responsibility to protect us as Jewish students as we are not going anywhere.

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About the Contributor
Stella Muzin
Stella Muzin, Editor-in-Chief
Stella Muzin is eager to continue her work on Lion’s Tale as Editor-in-Chief after previously serving as Arts and Entertainment Editor. She's excited to continue designing spreads, editing articles and working with the rest of the staff. Outside of the newspaper, Stella is on the JDS Debate team and Swim team and is the president of the Political Discussion Club. In Stella’s free time you can find her binging reality TV or spending time with her family and friends. She's looking forward to a year of growth and improvement for the Lion’s Tale and can’t wait to be a part of it.  

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