CARLISLE, Pa. — A YouTube video that depicts anti-Semitism by a Dickinson College student has prompted a statement from the school's administration.
The college's President, Margee Ensign, and Vice President, George Stroud, confirmed the incident involved a Dickinson student via e-mail.
They released this statement to the college community on Friday:
"To the Dickinson Community:
Earlier today, we were made aware of a hateful video that appeared to involve a Dickinson student. This video is not only harmful to our campus community but is an anti-Semitic act. Any act of bias undermines our Dickinson values.
As soon as we learned about this video, we took immediate action. The Bias Education Response Team (BERT) met and George Stroud, vice president of student life and dean of students, has reached out to the individual we believe to be involved. The college will be thoroughly investigating this matter and taking appropriate action in accordance with our policies and procedures.
In 2019, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) reported 2,107 individual anti-Semitic incidents throughout the United States. This represents a 12 percent increase from 2018, and continues an unfortunate upward trend seen throughout the last several years. Hillel International also reports increased incidents of anti-Semitism on college campuses in recent years.
We want to thank everyone who reported this matter to us. We take this very seriously and we remain committed to building a more just community."
The video reportedly made its way through the campus community and made its way to YouTube.
The Dickinson - Milton B. Asbell Center for Jewish Life released this statement on their Facebook page:
On Friday, a video with antisemitic content came to light among our Dickinson community. As the center for Jewish Life on campus, it is our duty to speak out when we see antisemitism anywhere, but especially among our student body.
Too often, acts of bigotry are couched as humorous, as “just jokes” or as “satire,” but the effect is clear to those affected and always very serious. These statements are meant to intimidate, and often cause anxiety and fear. At a time when antisemitic incidents in the United States are at their highest point since 1979, and antisemitic assaults and murders are at an all time high, we cannot afford to take any incident of bias lightly.
When people make antisemitic jokes, they send the message that they take the concerns of the Jewish community lightly, and that they consider Jewish voices as unworthy of attention. But we are grateful that this has not been the response writ large. So many among the Dickinson community have spoken out against this incident, from President Ensign to every student who brought the video to the attention of our Bias Response Team. We are grateful for everyone who continues to take antisemitism seriously.
For our Jewish students, an email will go out on Monday with information about holding space to talk about your feelings and about how best to respond to incidents like these. We hope that this will help you know that you are supported in this time. And for the rest of the Dickinson community, we at the Asbell Center are happy to be a resource. If you want to learn more about antisemitism and how to ally against it, please reach out. It is only by standing together that we can move forward and build a more just world.