Statement on Campus Protests

Published on 07 May 2024

The Alwaleed Center for Muslim Christian Understanding (ACMCU), The Bridge Initiative and the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown University stand in support of courageous university students across the country exercising their First Amendment rights and calling for an end to US complicity in Israel’s genocide in Gaza.

We are shocked by the videos and images we have seen as university administrations have called on security forces to forcibly shut down these peaceful sit-ins. We condemn any use of force, intimidation, or brutality against protesters. As academic centers, we are not only responsible for equipping our students with the knowledge and critical thinking skills needed to create a more just society, but we are also responsible for their well-being.

The attempt to smear these student protesters as “terrorists” or “antisemitic” puts their lives in danger given that Islamophobic rhetoric and hate crimes are already at dangerous levels. Further, attempts to weaponize antisemitism to shut down peaceful dissent and legitimate criticism of Israel is dangerous as it dilutes the very real problem of antisemitism.

We stand in full support of student protesters who are playing a key role in driving social change and progress for our country. In the same way that a previous generation mobilized to oppose the Vietnam war and end apartheid in South Africa, we salute the beautiful idealism, courage and self-sacrifice of students in America today who have mobilized to stop a US-backed genocide in Gaza.

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