Last year, I led The Hatchet’s editorial board during one of the University’s most scandal-ridden Student Association election seasons. After a candidate we endorsed was pulled from the race, we retracted our endorsement. The information we learned from the Joint Elections Committee hearing was not known to the editorial board at the time of our endorsement, so when the information was learned, we corrected it to reflect the nature of events. This year was no different.
The Hatchet’s editorial board was unaware of the racist, bigoted and anti-Semitic Facebook post from executive vice presidential candidate Brady Forrest. Had I known, I would not have been a part of an endorsement of him. Rather, I would have spent my time detailing how his post showed key misunderstandings of Jewish identity, and conflated a nationality, a political position and a religion into one disgusting message.
I am a Jewish woman on this campus. I have attended religious services at Hillel every year. But while this campus is home to many Jewish students, I’ve often noticed that Jewish voices are left out of conversations on minority rights, inclusion and diversity. As a Jewish woman, people assume what my political beliefs are, what my thoughts are on Palestinian rights and what I think of the Middle East conflict. The fact is, when someone assumes that my religion dictates an extremist ideology, it is no different than assuming an alt-right ideology on Muslims.
Forrest does not deserve my endorsement. He does not deserve to serve as the SA’s next EVP. Anti-Semitism has come back into fashion for some. A D.C. Councilman felt entitled to blame Jews for the weather. A far left activist has claimed that Jews are the enemy of the American people. Neo-nazis marched through Charlottesville, Va. just last year. I will not be a part of a conversation that equates Judaism with evil.
I fully supported the editorial board’s decision to rescind our endorsement of Forrest. I hope you will all keep that in consideration when casting your votes.
Melissa Holzberg, a senior majoring in political communication, is The Hatchet’s managing director.
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