Friday, March 11, 2011

That's Not A Minaret--Yet

In fact, it's the Campanile (Sather Tower) on the campus of UC Berkeley. I spent my halcyon undergrad days in the shadow of that monument back when all we had to worry about was the fascist administration restricting our free speech and filthy speech rights. In those glorious days, the only people pushing us around were the campus police.

Today, if you don't want to get battered, pushed around and manhandled you had better get on the pro-Muslim bandwagon--or else. Jewish Berkeley student Jessica Felber learned that the hard and painful way. Last year, Felber dared to show up at a pro-Palestinian rally in Sproul Plaza (at least the location of the demonstrations hasn't changed since the 60s) carrying the highly-provocative sign reading "Israel wants peace." Now how could she not know that such activity would force dedicated young Muslim males to reprimand her--physically, in accordance with Shari'a law?

I guess there were no machetes available, so Husam Zakharia attacked Felber with the only metal weapon immediately available to him--a shopping cart. That may not sound like much, but have you ever had an inattentive fellow shopper accidentally hit you in the ankle with a fully-loaded shopping cart at low speed? I have, and it hurt like hell. But this was neither accidental nor at low speed. It was a weapon, pure and simple. Zakharia is the leader of the Students for Justice in Palestine (but not in Berkeley, apparently).

Felber got a restraining order against Zakharia and several of his fellow thugs, but that is not what makes this case a bit different. California has laws that are lumped under the concept of "failure to protect." If an entity (public or private) has notice (real or constructive) that a danger to life or property exists on its premises, that entity has a duty to protect persons and property from harm. The UC campus police had plenty of notice. More than a few of these pro-Palestinian rallies have turned violent, and in not a single case was the aggressor an opponent of the pro-Palestinian cause. Zakharia himself, along with two of his lieutenants, had previously been charged with assault and battery on the campus at a meeting of Jewish students.

Other cute activities by the SJP had included setting up mock checkpoints ostensibly to represent the "oppressive" Israeli check points, at which they carried fake weapons and ordered each person passing through to name his or her religious affiliation. Those who didn't comply were roughed up. In 2004 and 2007, SJP radicals disrupted speeches by Daniel Pipes, prominent critic of the Palestinian cause, and author Nonie Darwish. There was heckling, pushing and shoving, and shouts of "Death to Zionism" and "Sieg heil."

That's the short list of dangerous activities conducted by the SJP prior to the assault on Felber. The campus police knew or should have known of the SJP's record of escalating violence. They were on actual notice of the pro-Palestinian rally. And they knew that there would be counter-demonstrators (though far fewer in number). Hence--duty to protect. Felber has filed suit for her injuries against the university for its failure to perform its duty to protect. She alleges that the university failed to provide a safe atmosphere and failed to deal with ongoing harassment and intimidation by Muslim and pro-Arab student groups. The suit further alleges that "UC policies fostered and encouraged pro-terrorist incitement, and failed to effectively discipline the Muslim Students Association and SJP for their pro-terrorist programs, goals and conduct, despite having ample notice.

The university has been very lax about doing anything to preserve the peace on campus. But they did so a short time before the Felber attack, which involved the same cast of characters (Muslim Students Association and the SJP). Visiting Israeli Ambassador was harrassed at the Irvine campus, and his speech cut short for safety reasons. The ringleaders are actually facing criminal prosecution there. So obviously, UC has no argument that it didn't know that physical intimidation and actual assault were highly likely if the campus police did not make high-profile appearances at the explosive events.

If Zelber is successful in her lawsuit, which I sincerely hope she is, it may wake up the administration and the campus police to their duty to protect students and visitors on the various campuses, despite their clear sympathies for Muslim causes. My other alma mater, San Francisco State University, is even worse. On several occasions, the campus police have stood idly by while enraged (aren't they always?) Muslim students assaulted and battered Jewish counter-protestors. When the victims complained, the police simply told them that if they didn't want to get hurt, they should just stay away from pro-Palestinian, pro-jihad rallies.


LL said...

To date, everything tends to favor the radical Muslim agenda - and I can't understand why, because at a gut level, it makes no sense.

While I doubt that this lawsuit will bring about 'change I can believe in' when it comes to Muslim bullying tactics, it may force universities, and possibly others, to be more responsible? Ok, maybe?

T_Rav said...

So does this mean I can hold a pro-Israel rally and rough up Palestinian counter-protestors? Because if that's what the police are telling those assaulted at pro-jihad rallies, it only stands to reason the opposite would work as well.

Notawonk said...

holy smokes, this is horrifying. we're up against an enemy that will stop at nothing short of our death and we're allowing this nonsense to continue? wth is going on?

Unknown said...

LL: I have an opinion about what to do with the Muslim thugs, and it doesn't involve changing their alleged minds. But in the spirit of civility, I'll suppress my desire to express that opinion here.

If the lawsuit is successful (and in California that is definitely not a sure thing), it could be the beginning of a helpful trend. The University of California is already financially-strapped, and if it can be hit hard enough often enough with large monetary damages, real action to stop the violence might be had. That financial hit could be accompanied by ever-increasing tuition and fees to cover the losses which would bring out the other troublesome demonstrators--the pampered jerks who have already caused trouble because they think tuition and fees are too high. Divide and conquer--play them off against each other.

Unknown said...

T_Rav: Ah, you're trying to fight political-correctness with logic. Once the civilization-haters have decided on an agenda and recruited the "benign neglect" of the public authorities, the simple rules of fairness, honesty and equality of rights go out the window. Remember, the police wouldn't do anything to protect Felber because she provoked the attack with her "Israel wants peace" sign. Sauce for the goose is not sauce for the gander in leftist circles. More than anything, I am disturbed by the astounding tolerance for resurgent antisemitism which has reared its ugly head. It disguises its vicious nature by calling itself anti-Zionism, but Mohammed declared this jihad long before the Jews ever had the least hope of re-establishing their homeland. As a baby-boomer, I honestly thought that except for small pockets of ignorance, anti-semitism was dead. How wrong I was.

Unknown said...

Patti: And isn't it amazing that the Islamic activists have used "lawfare" and "libel tourism" to squelch any word critical of Islamism, but when it comes to something as simple as stopping genuine Muslim violence against American citizens on American soil, the police shrug their shoulders and act as if they just can't do anything about it.

AndrewPrice said...

Who needs peace on campus when have a political point to make?

Unknown said...

Andrew: And in the interim, I received a memo from The California Political Reporter revealing how many UC administrators are preparing to retire on six figure pensions. It's appalling. I should have kept that job in the Berkeley admissions office after all.

Tennessee Jed said...

My take is Islam has become the new "in" PC cause. Now I think we all realize that looking back on what happened to some Japanese during WWII, nobody wants too see innocent Muslims Americans persecuted.

But that is not what is happening. What happened at Berkley is wrong, wrong, wrong. Trying to paint King and the G.O.P. is equally wrongheaded.

Thanks for the post, Hawk.

Unknown said...

Tennessee: Indeed. I watched Rep. Ellison dissemble at the Muslim Terrorist hearings (lol), telling a largely fabricated story about a Muslim paramedic losing his life rushing into the wreckage of the World Trade Center. Boo-freaking-hoo. I'll call his one paramedic and raise him 3,000 innocent civilians. And the same people who were weeping like babies with Ellison make fun of Rep. Boehner when he tears up a bit talking about his love for his family or the deaths of patriotic Americans in a war we didn't ask for. P-u-k-e.

StanH said...

Geography has something to do with these exploits as well. A bully senses your weakest spot, the Islamo-fascist know in the Bay Area (SF), most college campuses, a perceived minority can get away with murder, they know that they will be dealing with, the young witless politically correct. That doesn’t excuse the campus police.

I go through life, and I’m never so lucky to have too pass through a road block set up by wannabe Islamo-fascist, I would flip out!

rlaWTX said...

I must admit, I never realized all of the advantages I had at a small WTX university, now or -ummmm- 15 yrs ago. We had a nice, peaceful candle vigil for Desert Storm. Margaret Thatcher came and spoke (I met her!!!). Even the lefty profs in the gov't dept (one was a bonna fide 60's Berkley grad!) were polite and congenial. I love Texas!!!

On a sorta related subject: apparently TX is looking at allowing guns to be carried by CCL holders on TX college campuses. My nice, Portuguese/French-Canadian social psych prof is a tad overwelmed by the awfulness of the idea. I started to go into the reasons behind the idea, as I've heard them, but she just looked so confused as I started... so I stopped. It was just kinda funny.

And on an unrelated subject: Y'all have a great Spring Break!!! I am actually taking a short vacation (driving to DFW and hanging out)!! But I am unsure of internet access, so don't have too much fun around here without me!!

Unknown said...

Stan: I probably wouldn't mind so much if the campus police at Cal had been as gentle with us as they are with the Islamokooks. I guess that's what you get in four decades of increasing political-correctness and a campus where the inmates have taken over the asylum.

Unknown said...

rlaWTX: Well, we're at two different ends of the timeline. We had Margaret Thatcher as a visiting lecturer at Cal, though at that time nobody had ever heard of her. She was still a back-bench Tory working her way up through the system. I really remember her saying that we needed to understand what we call conservatives and what they call conservatives were two very different things.

Have fun on your break!

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