Andrew Pessin is a distinguished philosophy professor at Connecticut College. He is also, as I understand it, the only Jewish professor at the college who regularly speaks up on behalf of Israel in an intellectual climate that is often dominated by left-wing and foreign students hostile to Israel.
This made him the target of one Lamiya Khandaker, a student who took his intro to philosophy class without incident last Fall. In February, she sent him an email complaining about a Facebook post from the previous August, in which used the metaphor of a rabid pit bull to describe the situation in Gaza, to wit, “One image which essentializes the current situation in Gaza might be this. You’ve got a rabid pit bull chained in a cage, regularly making mass efforts to escape.”
Reading the post, it’s ambiguous whether the rabid pit bull analogy is meant to apply to Hamas, Hamas and its Palestinian supporters, or Palestinian residents of Gaza more generally (whoever heard of a hastily-drafted, unclear, FB post?). However, I have seen his previous Facebook posts on the Gaza war last Summer, and they are full of criticism of Hamas, and don’t say anything nasty about Palestinians more generally, suggesting that he was, in fact, referring to Hamas.
In any event, Khandaker suggested that she found the post racist. Pessin clarified in response that he was not referring to Palestinians in general, but to Hamas and why its behavior provides a rationale for the Israel blockade of Gaza.
Khandaker is an idiot. Palestinians aren’t a “race.” They aren’t even a nationality. But, of course, the vast majority of campus “racism” complaints are just dishonest political hit-jobs.
Speaking of animal analogies, Hamas’s charter calls Jews the “descendants of apes and pigs.” Pro-Hamas activists who gin up phony racism controversies like this one would like you to forget that.
Shame on the Connecticut College faculty for feeding the digital lynch mob rather than standing up for their colleague, or at least wallowing in ignominious silence.
How much per year does Connecticut College cost to attend? Why spend that on an environment in which political hit-jobs are met with “ignominious silence?”