I’m writing about the recent stories in your paper about Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. (“Is Rutgers Advising BDS Allies?” April 27, 2022 and “Jewish Students Targeted at Rutgers” May 4, 2022).
In last week’s article, you quoted a student: “We love Rutgers, but this is not the first time we’ve been exposed to this kind of stuff,” said Perlmutter. “We are exposed to it everywhere. Rutgers is not doing anything for the Jewish community. I know of no Jewish person who would feel safe wearing a Jewish star. No one here would ever wear an AEPi T-shirt on campus. We have people screaming ‘stupid Jews’ or ‘kikes,’ and we don’t even tell the school anymore because they don’t support us. We just go on with our lives, which is kind of upsetting.”
I am one of 6,000- plus undergraduate students at Rutgers; and there are hundreds of graduate students as well.
To say that this is the sentiment and experience of every single Jewish student at Rutgers is absurd. It is statistically impossible to obtain that type of information. I don’t want to minimize the experience of any student who has experienced hatred for being Jewish; and at the same time; you have stories of Jews befriending Muslim students and students from Arab countries.
Personally, I have never encountered antisemitism on campus, and I find it disturbing when I am constantly asked if I have when I inform people I attend Rutgers.
Hillel frequently runs interfaith events, and recently held an interfaith comedy night.
To continually write articles week after week criticizing Rutgers, without giving them a chance to respond, is unfair.
I would like The Jewish Link to interview President Jonathon Holloway about his Beloved Community Initiative. He repeatedly discusses his vision of making Rutgers into a Beloved Community, and what steps are necessary to get the university there.
I am sure he would be open to hearing input from the greater Jewish community of New Jersey about what he can do so they can feel comfortable sending their children there.
(last name withheld upon request)