Advocacy Alert: Urge U of M Board of Regents to reject BDS and speak out against campus antisemitism

May 6, 2024 

The pro-Hamas students who shut down campus for nearly a week with an illegal encampment at the University of Minnesota are scheduled to address the Board of Regents on Friday, May 10. This opportunity was given to them as part of the U’s concessions to end the encampment.  

The Regents also need to hear from you. While Jewish student leaders will also speak at the May 10 Regents meeting, the Regents also need to hear from University of Minnesota alumni, donors, faculty, staff, parents, and Minnesota taxpayers. 

Use the advocacy template below to email ALL 12 UMN Regents. Please bcc for our internal tracking. 

U of M Board of Regents Advocacy Template;;;;;;;;;;;; 


Subject: Speak clearly against antisemitism  

Dear UMN Board of Regents: 

I am writing to express my firm opposition to your taking any action that further indulges UMN Divest’s anti-Israel, pro-Hamas “demands.”  

[share in your own words how the anti-Israel protests on campus have impacted you] 

As a joint JCRC and Minnesota Hillel statement noted Sunday, I am appalled that the University, through the Office of the President, appears unwilling to connect rising campus antisemitism with violent, hateful slogans calling for the murder of Jews (‘Glory to the Resistance,’ ‘Globalize the Intifada,’ or ‘Victory to Al Aqsa Flood’) that have blanketed the campus since October 7 — and which escalated while the University allowed a pro-Hamas encampment to disrupt campus life.  

U Regents must make clear that singling out Israel for divestment and slogans supporting terrorism against Israelis or Jews have no place at the U or anywhere else in our state. 

Attacking Israel’s legitimacy and normalizing violence against Jews and Israelis is at the core of the extreme UMN Divest agenda. This is evident through their repetition of pro-Hamas slogans and their affiliation with National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP). 

On October 8, while Hamas terrorists were still inside Israeli villages murdering, kidnapping, and raping civilians, NSJP published a “Day of Resistance Toolkit,” which celebrated the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust, “a historic win for the Palestinian resistance,” and stated that students have “unshakable responsibility to join the call for mass mobilization.” 

Like Hamas, UMN Divest’s vision is for a world in which Israel does not exist, and Jews who express empathy or solidarity with Israel (which is home to half of the world’s Jews) are boycotted, dehumanized, and silenced. These are the goals of the BDS movement

According to a 2023 survey, 85% of American Jews and 84% of the general American public view the statement, “Israel has no right to exist,” as antisemitic. It would be a grave error for the University to continue caving to extortionist actors whose eliminationist vision aligns with such a small minority of the American population.  

Any further concessions to this dangerous agenda — through discriminatory divestments targeting Israel or antisemitic academic boycotts — will only deepen the harm Jewish students are experiencing and further sink public confidence in higher education.  


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