Columbia Student Government Votes to Hold Campus Referendum on Divestment
Mon Nov 25 2019
Columbia University’s College Student Council (CCSC) voted on the evening of Nov. 24 to have the campus vote on a referendum calling on the university to divest from companies that conduct business with Israel.
The Columbia Spectator reports that the final vote was 25 in favor and 12 against. During the discussion before the vote, Aryeh: Columbia Student Association Communications Director Jonathan Cohen argued that the Israel-Palestinian conflict should be discussed through events and debates, not “through a question, through a referendum shoved down students’ throats.”
Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) member Siri Ketha said, “Not allowing this question to pass would be a direct impediment to the so-called dialogue you wish to foster. How could dialogue be fostered if this conversation keeps getting confined to this room specifically?”
Anti-Defamation League New York and New Jersey Regional Director Evan Bernstein denounced the vote in a statement.
“The founding goals of the [boycott, divestment and sanctions] movement and many of the strategies it employs are anti-Semitic and are counterproductive to a pathway to Israel-Palestinian peace,” Bernstein said. “We stand with Columbia Hillel and the students across the Columbia campus who are rightly concerned by this development.”...