The Rising Tide of Hate: Colleges Unsafe for Jewish Students

Assemblyman Ari Brown (R-Cedarhurst) today condemned the rise of antisemitism at major universities, especially in New York City, and called on school administrators to take immediate action to curb hate and ensure Jewish students’ safety.

“Jewish students and faculty are facing increasing threats, yet “higher education” officials have done little more than offer empty condemnations and excuses,” Brown said. “Schools like CUNY, Columbia and NYU have allowed vicious attacks on Jewish students to not only occur, but at times have promoted hateful lies and propaganda that threaten the lives of students.”

Brown pointed to a recent incident at Cooper Union College, where Jewish students were locked inside a library during a protest with anti-Israel and anti-Semitic chants outside. According to reports, students inside could be seen wearing yarmulkes and visibly frightened and isolated. A school spokesperson dismissed the threatening act, claiming “all students have now dispersed.”

“To lock Jewish students in a room while threatening protesters rally just a few feet away is unconscionable,” Brown said. “Rather than take real action against this antisemitism, the school made excuses and allowed the perpetrators to continue their hate campaign unabated. This sends the message that Jewish lives don't matter.”

Pro-Palestinian and antisemitic flyers posted at Cooper Union and other schools spread misinformation blaming Israel for the brutal attacks on Jews by Hamas on October 7. This rhetoric, combined with intimidation tactics like trapping students in the library, show these protests are meant to endanger Jews, not promote peace or human rights.

“Those who think more education is the answer to hate have it wrong,” said Brown. “In reality, these places of “higher learning” have become breeding grounds for antisemitism. Diversity and inclusion do not apply to every group, they end where Jewish interests begin. Students deserve to feel safe, not locked away in fear of violence by other students and administrators, the time for talk is over. As public figures, we have a moral duty to protect students. We’ve called on “higher education” officials to act, but they laugh it off because to them, Jewish blood is cheap. I will be introducing legislation that will hit these colleges and universities where it hurts most, in their pocketbooks. They will not receive a single cent from the state government to fund the rhetoric and antisemitism,” said Brown.