All Posts Tagged With: "Jewish"
Jimmy Carter at Queen’s, Twinkies at risk & a hip-hop club
1. Queen’s University is facing a backlash after deciding to award former U.S. president Jimmy Carter an honourary degree. Why? Because Carter criticizes Israel. The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs told National Post that at least 50 upset Queen’s alumni have contacted them.
2. Twinkies and Wonder Bread are on life-support. Hostess Brands Inc. says it will go out of business after failing to get wage and benefit cuts from thousands of striking bakery workers.
3. A third-year journalism student at Ryerson University has started the first Canadian chapter of the Student Hip-Hop Organization. The self-funded group celebrates hip-hop culture and discusses what’s hot on the hip-hop scene, reports The Eyeopener. U.S. branches have brought acts like Wiz Khalifa and Kid Cudi to campus.
Sexist Bics, world records, football and a stolen monkey
1. People are outraged about a new line of pens called “Bic for Her” that come in a purple package. One obvious reason for their anger: the gendered Bics cost 70 per cent more than the regular Bics.
2. McGill University set the Guinness World Record for the world’s biggest fruit salad yesterday, 5,083 kilos to be exact. Today, Ryerson University will attempt something more modest—the most people ringing cowbells all at once for two minutes. The current record is 640.
3. We now know more about the cyclist killed in Edmonton on Monday by a cement truck. Isaak Kornelsen was a track and field athlete at the University of Alberta who ran both middle and long distances. He founded a philosophy club in high school and was the valedictorian. Rest in peace.
Concert would “deeply offend”
Tel Aviv University will not permit a scheduled Richard Wagner concert to take place on its campus after angry protests, reports Haaretz. A university spokesperson chastised the show’s organizer, Attorney Yonathan Livni, saying that the performance would “deeply offend the Israeli public in general and Holocaust survivors in particular.” Livni is the founder of the Israel Wagner Society. Wagner, a nineteeth century composer, espoused anti-Semitic views and was a favorite of Adolf Hitler, the German chancellor who led the Holocaust that killed six-million Jews during World War II.
Student who accused professor of antisemitism is back
Remember Sarah Grunfeld? She’s the York University student who stormed out of a lecture in September of last year because her professor said that “all Jews should be sterilized.”
It later emerged that Professor Cameron Johnston, who is Jewish, was using the statement as an example of an invalid and dangerous opinion that must be reasonably qualified.
It appears that Grunfeld left the 450-seat lecture before Cameron qualified the opinion. Grunfeld was widely rebuked, including by Maclean’s own 22-year-old Jewish columnist, Emma Teitel.
But she didn’t go away quietly. She’s now back in a YouTube video called The Truth Behind the Sarah Grunfeld story. At least, we assume it’s her; the face in the video appears in silhouette.
“I was ridiculed, I was demonized,” says the shadowy figure. “I was called an moron, a dimwit, an idiot…” The figure then explains that she was paying full attention (FULL ATTENTION!) and sitting in the front row of class. “I know exactly what I heard,” she says. The shadowy figure admits that the comment happened in the “first five minutes of [Cameron's] talk about how opinions can be dangerous.” She says she waited for the professor to provide some kind of qualifier, but he did not.
This all comes before the shadowy figure accuses against the media, York University, Hillel of Greater Toronto and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs of mistreating her. The voice concludes by asking: “what’s the future for Jewish students?”
A better question might be: “what’s the future of Sarah Grunfeld?”
Jewish student complained
The University of Windsor’s Leddy Library removed three globes earlier this month because of what appeared to be anti-Israeli vandalism. Gavin Wolch, a third-year law school student who is Jewish, told The Lance student newspaper that he complained more than once about the globes before they were removed. A library official denied that he’d received earlier complaints. This is not the first time that ethnically-motivated graffiti has been reported at the university. In November, anti-Arab and anti-South Asian graffiti was found in the washrooms near Windsor’s multi-faith space.
Jewish student objected
Students at the famous London School of Economics are facing discipline after a Jewish student objected to a Nazi-themed drinking game during a school ski trip and received a broken nose.
A video of the drinking game, which took place in early December in France, was uploaded to YouTube, shared of Facebook and then removed, according to The Beaver student newspaper.
The game, called “Nazi Ring of Fire,” involved arranging cards on a table in the shape of a Swastika. The game compelled players to commit antisemitic acts including “saluting the Fuhrer.”
As the Jewish tongue dies at home, scholars step up
The old language of Eastern Europe’s Jews—the tongue that brought us such lively words as schmooze, glitch, klutz, chutzpah, nosh, schmuck and schmo—has been through a lot.
Yiddish was threatened by the holocaust when five million speakers—roughly half of the total—were murdered in the genocide, writes University of Ottawa researcher Rebecca Margolis.
Then it was threatened by a generation in the diaspora that was sometimes embarrassed of their parents’ foreign tongue and preferred to converse in English or another vernacular anyway.
Today, Yiddish contends with the fact that its keepers are mainly Bubbes and Zeydes of the diaspora, who may not be around much longer. According to Statistics Canada, between 2001 and 2006, the number of Yiddish speakers declined from 37,010 to 27,605 nationally. More than a third of those who remained—9,305—were over 75 years-old. Only 1,345 were under age five.
Would that stop hate or stifle free speech?
Jewish organizations are calling on the University of Toronto to cancel an 18-week seminar series led by Toronto-based Islamic scholar Abdullah Hakim Quick. They say Quick has made homophobic and antisemitic comments in the past and should not be allowed to speak on campus.
“The unfortunate truth is that when you have speakers like this, that are divisive, it hurts communities,” says Avi Benlolo, President of the FSWC. “We hope that the unviersity will make the right decision to cancel it or put it on hold pending review,” he adds.
U of T spokesperson April Kemick told CJN that the “event is a booking by a campus group—one of hundreds that happen over the course of the year—and there is no connection to the university.”