Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Boycott-Israel Resolution is attempted at Michigan Student Assembly

The Michigan Daily

Previously on the Web at:

By Chris Herring, written on Sep. 24, 2008

By Matt Aaronson
Daily Staff Reporter

Published on THE WIRE, then deleted:

"...An attempted resolution proposal"

Ann Arbor resident and anti-Israel activist Blaine Coleman and a woman who claimed her name was Abeer Hamza tried to propose a resolution “to boycott apartheid-Israel, and to stop apartheid on campus.”

The resolution, handed out to the assembly in a packet, listed three items in its summary: “Boycott all Israeli products,” “Take that $1 trillion you’re spending to kill Muslims, and spend it instead on rebuilding Detroit,” and “Stop 400 years of white privilege—the University should admit every black high school graduate.” As a number of assembly members got up to leave during his speech, Coleman remarked “If you’re against rebuilding Detroit, you’ll want to leave the room now.”

MSA President Sabrina Shingwani reminded the assembly that everyone who takes the floor at meetings is entitled to the same freedom of speech. (Though it’s unclear whether Coleman had a right to be there. More on that later)

The woman who identified herself as Abeer Hamza called Israel “a major force of destruction” and claimed that if “all the things that Israel has done” had been done by another country, the assembly “would be here every night passing resolutions.”

After the speakers finished, Shingwani told the assembly there is currently no such resolution and that the proper procedure for proposing such a resolution had not been followed.

Later, Student General Counsel Michael Benson reiterated the importance of respecting the First Amendment rights of those voicing their opinions before the Assembly. He ripped up his copy of the proposal, as another student representative already had, before yielding back his time.

As for Coleman, he left the meeting when he realized someone from MSA had notified the Department of Public Safety of his appearance at the meeting. Coleman has been told not to return to University property by campus police because of his involvement in past incidents.


Blaine Coleman
said (Sep. 24, 2008 at 1:11AM)
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Thanks to Mr. Aaronson for accurately reporting the substance of the Boycott-Israel Resolution.

It is remarkable that, whenever you peacefully ask for humanitarian boycotts against Israel, Israel’s defenders reach for a gun– in this case, you see MSA members reaching for the police.

Palestinians face worse. Many thousands have been shot dead by the Israeli army, on Palestinian land. Over a million Palestinians are being starved in Gaza, by an Israeli army siege… as MSA members tear up Palestine human rights resolutions in Ann Arbor.

What kind of “democracy” is that?

What kind of “Free Speech” is that?


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