Rutgers, Northwestern face challenge from conservatives for caving to anti-Israel students’ demands

Young America’s Foundation and the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty issued complaints against the two schools for making massive concessions to anti-Israel activists.

‘Rutgers is free to appease protesters, but they aren't free to violate federal law,’ a WILL official told Campus Reform.

Young America’s Foundation (YAF) is fighting against two universities’ deals with anti-Israel protesters. 

Rutgers University in New Jersey announced on May 2 that it has reached a deal with anti-Israel students on campus, convincing them to end their tent encampment in exchange for concessions from the university. The school said that the agreement “better addresses the needs of our Arab, Muslim, and Palestinian student body.”

Northwestern University in Illinois also struck a deal with protesters, making what some have called “shocking concessions to the unlawful antisemitic encampments.” 

[RELATED: University of Minnesota appeased its occupiers by considering Israel divestment]

In response, YAF and the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL) issued civil rights complaints against Rutgers and Northwestern, claiming the universities violated Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

YAF reported on May 7 that Northwestern and Rutgers University “are promising full-ride scholarships, faculty fellowships, and administrative hires based on race, ethnicity, national origin, and religion.”

Rutgers has agreed to “hire senior administrators with cultural competency and knowledge about Arabs, Palestinians, Muslims, anti-Palestinian racism, and Islamophobia” and “promised to develop leftist training sessions for its administrators and staff,” and Northwestern “promised to hire two Palestinian faculty members for two years, and will also provide the full cost of attendance for five Palestinian undergraduates,” YAF wrote. 

Northwestern will also provide “immediate temporary space for [Middle Eastern, North African,] and Muslim students.”

YAF insisted that “[i]nstead of cowering to the demands of Hamas-supporting students, these universities must uphold law and order by clearing the encampments and prosecuting all violators to the fullest extent of the law.” 

YAF quoted Rutgers Business School student Jeremy Li, who said: “What Rutgers University has done defies the law and common sense. Like many students believe, hard work and merit should be driving values here at our school. I am proud to stand with YAF on campus and join students across the country who have said enough is enough.”

Some of the concessions Rutgers made to the anti-Israel protesters include a commitment from the Chancellor to “continue to name Palestine, Palestinians, and Gaza in future communications” and a promise from the university to “develop training sessions on anti-Palestinian, antiArab, and anti-Muslim racism for all RU administrators & staff.” 

[RELATED: ADL ‘deeply disappointed’ in Harvard’s decision to cave to anti-Semitic demands]

WILL Deputy Counsel Dan Lennington stated: “Many academic institutions are choosing to appease pro-Hamas campus protesters by making illegal promises of scholarships and space for student organizations. But providing a benefit based on a student’s race or national origin is illegal. . . . We will continue to oppose universities that flout federal law and shirk their duty to provide a race-neutral education environment free of harassment and discrimination.”

Lennington told Campus Reform: “Rutgers is free to appease protesters, but they aren’t free to violate federal law. Universities must be neutral when it comes to race and national origin. Violations in Title VI can lead to a loss of federal funding, so we hope Rutgers takes this complaint seriously.”

Campus Reform has reached out to Rutgers University for comment. This article will be updated accordingly.