In his dismissal, Judge Seeborg left the door open for an amended complaint. Now, in new documents submitted to him in the Northern District Court, San Francisco Division, attorneys for the plaintiffs Felber and Brian Maissy asserted that, just as other minorities have received protection under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which prevents discrimination by government agencies that receive federal funds), so should Jewish students in this instance. “The content of the ‘checkpoint’ demonstrations,” the attorneys claim,
is hate speech, equal in legal odiousness to use of the “N” word, or similar racist and sexist expressions. The Defendant does not deny that the entire MSA/SJP “checkpoint” presentation is a racist passion play of the worst sort, which like the notorious anti-Semitic performances of Oberammergau, Bavaria: “portray Jews as bloodthirsty and treacherous villains. . .”
The reference is to the famed performance of the Passion Play put on in Oberammergau, Germany every ten years since 1634. Over the centuries, countless visitors there have witnessed the dramatic recreation of the suffering, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. But the performance – praised by Hitler – is also notorious for an anti-Semitic portrayal of Jews conspiring to kill Jesus.
However, unlike the Oberammergau Passion Play, which is performed on a traditional pay-to-view stage setting, the Regents have allowed the MSA/SJP to present their racist performance in the midst of an important public campus crossroads, and to include interaction, confrontation and violence against students who like these Plaintiffs, did not choose to “buy a ticket” in order to experience the performance.
The defense attempted to belittle the plaintiffs’ claims by arguing that their religious beliefs were not impacted by the mock checkpoints, assaults, and verbal harassment. Plaintiffs’ attorneys countered that MSA’s and SJP’s offensive and hostile actions “go to the heart of unlawful religious and racial endangerment and interference”:
To be free from violence and harassment based on their Jewish identity, while lawfully on a UC campus, are rights guaranteed by the rights to freedom of religion and to the equal protection of the law.
A hearing on the amended complaint is scheduled for March 15.
In a separate interview with attorney Sher, Glazov pointed out that, if the situation were reversed and a Jewish student had assaulted a Muslim, there would be outrage in the media and the university would not have hesitated to take stern disciplinary action. Sher agreed:
There is no question that if the shoe was on the other foot, immediate and decisive action would be taken by the powers that be. It’s time that we demand an end to the hypocrisy and double standards which have gone on far too long and which will be exposed in this lawsuit. The silent majority should remain silent no longer!
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