Former diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) director Dr. Tabia Lee was interviewed on The Lisa Wexler Show last week after Wexler read Dr. Lee’s eye-opening New York Post Op Ed, I was a DEI director — DEI drives campus antisemitism.
Wexler, who is Jewish, said the discussion was “revelatory” and it absolutely was.
Dr. Lee, who has been committed to social justice her whole life, described how the idea of “social justice” had been corrupted and changed into something called “critical social justice”, which is fully embraced by most DEI practitioners nowadays.
A foundational belief in critical social justice is that America was founded on white supremacy, and that racism is present everywhere in every interaction (i.e., it’s “systemic”), and that if there’s any disparity in outcomes, it’s due to race (or gender) inequities. The theory views the world through a lens of power, oppression and privilege. People are not viewed as unique individuals with agency, but rather representatives of their “check boxes” of race, gender, and so forth.
Another belief in critical social justice is that you can never understand someone else’s “lived experience” because you didn’t live it yourself. Therefore, you must accept a person's “lived experience” as truth, lest you be labeled a hater or a ‘phobe'.
Also embedded in this toxic ideology is the view that everybody should be working to “decenter whiteness” which is described by personality characteristics like being on time, being objective, thinking critically and so on. Decentering means doing everything not associated with “whiteness”.
But what’s the connection to anti-Semitism?
Dr. Lee relayed a story about her experience at De Anza College.
She said that Jewish students had suffered a number of hateful, hostile and antisemitic attacks at the school, so she tried to improve the situation by sharing diverse and inclusive perspectives from Jewish voices.
But critics accused her of being a “dirty Zionist” so the school declined to support her events. She asked the school to condemn the pattern of antisemitic behavior on campus, but it refused. She was told that Jews are “white oppressors” and that the job of faculty and staff was to “decenter whiteness”.
"At its worst, DEI is built on the unshakable belief that the world is divided into two groups of people: the oppressors and the oppressed,” wrote Dr. Lee. "Jews are categorically placed in the oppressor category, while Israel is branded a 'genocidal, settler, colonialist state’.”
"In this worldview, criticizing Israel and the Jewish people is not only acceptable but praiseworthy,” said Dr. Lee.
So there you have it.
Incidents of antisemitism are on the rise at college campuses throughout the country, and even in Connecticut.
Just yesterday, posters from a Communist group were found on UConn’s campus, carrying the message “by any means necessary” with imagery of a soldier pointing a gun into the air.
A student at Southern Connecticut State University was seen destroying posters of Israeli children kidnapped by Hamas.
Lamont even called for a meeting with higher education security officials to address the rise in hate on college campuses.
And it's not just college campuses, as a swastika was found last week on the campus of a Stamford high school, the Academy of Information Technology & Engineering.
Perhaps a good starting point for addressing the hate would be to roll back all of the toxic DEI / CRT / critical social justice programs that sprung up everywhere after George Floyd’s death, which was from a drug overdose, not systemic racism.