College Council Statement on Anti-Semitism and Hate Speech

On March 4, the College Council approved the following statement proposed by Representative David Shapiro (2018) regarding recent instances of hate speech on campus. 


Having been elected to further the interests of all students at the University of Chicago, and fundamentally invested in the well being of the students as the paramount mission of Student Government, the College Council deplores the recent anti-Semitic comments being posted on UChicago Secrets, and Yik Yak, targeting Jews and specific Jewish students. The College Council affirms that not all of the posts made on UChicago Secrets or Yik Yak were anti-Semitic, and that some of the sentiments expressed were legitimate criticism and protest speech protected by the first amendment. However, a large number of the posts on both social media platforms were simply racist, with the intent to cause emotional harm to members of the student body, and are consequently highly deplorable. The College Council unequivocally condemns any racist (anonymous or non) posts on social media, and encourages the Student Body at large to come together to wholeheartedly reject the unsafe and unwelcoming environment created for students by the anti-Semitic comments posted this week, and to work towards a campus where any hate speech, regardless of targeted victims, is rejected by the university community at large. As a College Council, we are available to hear the concerns of individuals and communities who have been targeted by hate speech. We encourage those students to reach out to their class representatives, as well as University resources, including Student Counseling Services, the Bias Response Team, the Dean on Call, and their division dean of student.