Student gov votes to ban Israeli hummus to be more 'inclusive'

The Dickinson College Student Government passed a mandate to ban Sabra hummus.

The ban effort was based on the fact that Sabra is an Israeli product.

Late last year, the student senate at Dickinson College in Pennsylvania passed a ban against Sabra Hummus on campus as part of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement against Israeli products. 

In the student resolution titled “A Resolution To Endorse the Banning of Sabra Hummus from the Devil’s Den” students moved to cease the sale of Sabra Hummus on campus once the existing product sold out. The students argued that such a ban would follow the “College’s commitment to sustainability and inclusivity.” 

The Devil’s Den is a popular campus dining location at which the Hummus is served.

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“Sabra Hummus is a brand partially owned by the Strauss Group, which is a company that financially and morally supports the Golani and Givati bridge of the Israeli Defense Force (IDF),” stated the resolution.

“These brigades of the IDF commit human rights abuses against Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza and the support of Sabra products helps the Strauss Group support the Israeli Defence Force brigade which maintains a cycle of oppression for Palestinian people in violation of international law,” it continued. 

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A second “alternative” version of the resolution titled was read weeks later and argued that the original proposal did not “consider the whole community effected to [sic] the proposal of banning Sabra Hummus” as it is “one of the only Kosher and vegan options offered on campus” since a campus dining hall lost its Kosher certification. 

The second resolution raised concerns of rising anti-Semitism and proposed that Sabra be replaced with another kosher hummus “in the interest of maintaining kosher students’ ability to feed themselves.”

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Despite the students’ decision, the college took a firm stance against the boycott.

“Dickinson encourages students to voice their opinions and affect change through our governance structure. We are pleased that the discussion about this issue at the Student Senate meeting was civil and that competing opinions were articulated,” Dickinson clarified in a statement on the matter.

“As an institution that deeply values global diversity and civil discussion and debate, Dickinson opposes this boycott. In 2014, we rejected the call from the American Studies Association to boycott Israeli universities and instead maintained our ongoing relationships with three Israeli institutions,” the university continued.

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“We reject the current call for boycott on the same grounds. Students have committed to continue with the open dialogue and active listening that they demonstrated during the discussion. We are confident that as they grapple with this and other complex issues they will continue to seek out and consider multiple perspectives and draw on the critical thinking and analysis skills they are developing here at Dickinson,” concluded the school.

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