This Saturday, Louis Farrakhan will deliver the keynote address of the Afrikan Black Coalition Conference at UC Berkeley. Throughout his career, Farrakhan's hateful rhetoric has targeted Jews, the LGBT community, and Israel. From referring to the Jewish people as "the Synagogue of Satan" or "bloodsuckers" to asserting that "the real anti-Semites are those who came out of Europe and settled in Palestine, and now they call themselves the true Jews," Farrakhan consistently espouses antisemitic conspiracy theories while negating the Jewish people's right to their religion and their land.
Organized by the UC Berkeley Black Student Union, an ASUC sponsored group, Farrakhan’s visit directly attacks Jewish students on this campus. Farrakhan’s hatred cannot be tolerated. It is unfathomable that the BSU has no issue in inviting such an abjectly offensive speaker to campus.
As recently as last week, Farrakhan delivered a speech described by the Anti-Defamation League as “a textbook example” of contemporary antisemitism. According to Abe Foxman, the director of the ADL: “In the past few years Farrakhan has turned his message and the mission of the Nation of Islam into a wide-ranging campaign to demonize and scapegoat Jews.” Just days after declaring, “The government of America is owned lock stock and barrel by those Zionists that love Israel above the United States of America,” Farrakhan will speak on our campus.
But Farrakhan’s bigotry is nothing new, nor reserved solely for Jews. His prejudiced outbursts include such statements as “murder and lying comes easy for white people” and “the Jews don't like Farrakhan, so they call me Hitler. Well, that's a good name. Hitler was a very great man.” Whether accusing Jews of controlling American politics, demonizing Jewish people, or proclaiming his friendship for Moammar Gadhafi, Farrakhan’s ideology serves only to promote hate.
Please take the time to let the BSU and campus leaders know that this event is unacceptable; relevant email addresses are listed below. More information about our response to this event will be forthcoming.
Salih Muhammad, Chair of the Black Student Union
Jonathan Poullard, Dean of Students
Vishalli Loomba, ASUC President