The Louis D. Brandeis Center (LDB) for Human Rights Under Law said it “welcomes” an apology by Brooklyn College President Karen Gould for the school’s forcible ejection of four pro-Israel Jewish students at an anti-Israel event hosted by the college last year.
On February 7, 2013, Brooklyn College hosted a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) event, sponsored by Students for Justice in Palestine, which featured anti-Israel activists Judith Butler and Omar Barghouti. Four students-Melanie Goldberg, Michael Ziegler, and Ari Ziegler, and Yvonne Juris-were forced to leave by school public safety officials over allegations by a non-campus event organizer that the students were being disruptive and passing out flyers.
A City University of New York (CUNY) investigation on the incident said Brooklyn College public safety officers had “wrongly deferred” to a non-campus-affiliated event organizer who was motivated by a “political viewpoint” after hearing about one of the ejected students’ pro-Israel views at a prior campus event. The report concluded that there was “no justification for the removal of the four students.”
Gould acknowledged the findings of the CUNY report and said that the students had every right to “remain at the event.”
“I wish to publicly apologize on behalf of Brooklyn College to Melanie, Michael, Ari and Yvonne over the treatment they received,” Gould stated.
LDB President Kenneth L. Marcus said, “This apology reflects the fact that the university violated the constitutional and civil rights of our clients at a public event. This was a shameful incident, and we are pleased that the university has accepted responsibility.”