UCR Professor: “Zionism politically toxified our schools”

Riverside, CA - A UC Riverside professor tweeted on January 12 that “Zionism politically toxified our schools.”

The tweet in question came regarding a debate on Twitter over the #DefendEthnicStudies. Groups that support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement like Jewish Voice for Peace had planned to use the hashtag calling for the California Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum to include Arab American Studies; pro-Israel groups such as StandWithUs and the American Jewish Committee countered by using the hashtag to argue that anti-Israel groups are pressuring the state to insert their bias into the curriculum.

Dylan Rodríguez, a Media and Cultural Studies professor at UC Riverside and the 2020-21 president of the American Studies Association, weighed in on the matter by tweeting, “Most California public education administrators don’t understand how Zionism politically toxified our schools and curricula. It prevents us from teaching historical material about entire populations. This must not continue.”

He added in a subsequent tweet: “A number of Zionist organizations want to convince us that Arab American Studies is ‘antisemitic.’ This is not only intellectually insulting but is also an inherently racist position.”