On April 19, 2017, the Associated Students at San Diego State University passed “A Resolution to Condemn Anti-Semitism.” The resolution takes a strong line against anti-Semitism, both in its addressing of a series of broad issues and its strict reliance on established definitions and law. The resolution cites both the U.S. State Department definition of anti-Semitism and the Marcus Policy which applies to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Marcus Policy, penned by Louis D. Brandeis Center President Kenneth Marcus, allows Jewish students to be protected under Title VI, based on their status as an ethno-religious minority.
This resolution follows in the footsteps of similar resolutions adopted by universities across the United States, such as UCLA, UCSB, UC Berkeley, Capital U, and Indiana U. Ryerson, a Canadian university based in Toronto, has also adopted a similar resolution. These resolutions mimic the similar legislative attempts to pass bills that define anti-Semitism on both a statewide and federal level. Recently, there have been attempts in South Carolina, Virginia, and Tennessee all aimed at adopting the State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism as it relates to public universities. On the congressional level, the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act, which passed the Senate in December, is awaiting reintroduction in congress this term.
Such resolutions have an impact that cannot be understated when it comes to the fight against anti-Semitism. These resolutions display to the state government that their schools want a stronger definition of anti-Semitism, and one that includes examples of anti-Semitism relative to Israel, in order to combat its resurgence.