Press Release: AACE Denounces Antisemitism and Advocates for Change at Harvard University
Livingston, New Jersey: On December 20, 2023, the Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE), a national organization that advocates for equal rights and opportunities in education, issued the following public letter to Harvard University president Claudine Gay and Governing Boards, denouncing antisemitism and advocating for change at Harvard University:
AACE Open Letter to Denounce Antisemitism and Advocate for Change at Harvard University
To President Claudine Gay and Governing Boards at Harvard University:
The Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE) stands firmly against all forms of discrimination, including antisemitism. We believe that institutions of higher learning should prioritize education over politicization. As such, we are deeply concerned about recent events at Harvard University and feel compelled to address them.
- Antisemitism at Harvard: Jewish students, though statistically a minority, deserve a learning environment free from harassment and threats based on their ethnicity. Many of their ancestors have suffered through the Holocaust, emphasizing the urgency of creating a safe and respectful campus. Unfortunately, President Gay has not taken a firm stance or implemented effective measures against the surge in antisemitism since the Oct. 7 massacre by Hamas terrorists. Recent incidents reported by Fortune underscore the need for immediate action to protect Jewish students.
- Freedom of Speech Hypocrisy at Harvard: President Gay’s congressional testimony on December 5, 2023, revealed a troubling inconsistency. While she invoked freedom of speech to dodge her inaction to address rising antisemitism, Harvard’s commitment to this fundamental right appears selective. Since 2019, the university has sanctioned four scholars, revoked student activist Kyle Kshuv’s status, and disinvited feminist philosopher Devin Buckly—all actions that undermine open discourse and intellectual diversity. As a result, the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) has ranked Harvard as one of the worst colleges in safeguarding freedom of speech. Such practices are unbecoming of a prestigious institution like Harvard.
- Harvard’s Diversion from Education to Politicalization In their recent letter supporting President Claudine Gay, Harvard’s faculty claims to resist political pressures. However, the reality is different. Over the years, Harvard has transformed into a locomotive for radical left politics. It leads the nation in anti-Asian discrimination during college admissions, promotes identity politics through Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and undermines educational excellence by eliminating standardized testing. This prioritization of political convenience over educational excellence not only perpetuates race-based discrimination but also threatens our nation’s STEM talent pool and global technological leadership.
As a leading educational institution in America, Harvard University has fallen short in critical areas, failing to provide students with an inclusive and safe study environment, protect freedom of speech, foster educational excellence, and uphold equal protection under the law for all Americans, regardless of their race or ethnicity. It is time for Harvard to chart a new course.
To effect meaningful change, the Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE) calls upon Harvard to:
- Combat Antisemitism and Racism: Harvard must take a firm stance and implement effective measures against antisemitism and all other forms of racism. Every student deserves a safe and respectful environment.
- Champion Freedom of Speech: Harvard must protect freedom of speech and foster diversity of ideas—a cornerstone of intellectual growth and open dialogue.
- Restore Meritocracy and Educational Excellence: Selection criteria for students and faculty should be based on merit, not on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) criteria. Excellence must be the guiding principle.
- Restructure Governing Bodies: Harvard’s Governing Boards, the President’s Office, and the Alumni Association’s Executive Committee should be restructured. A balanced representation of liberal and conservative views, educational experts, and significant Asian American voices will ensure holistic decision-making.
The impetus for change must begin with leadership. AACE urgently calls on Harvard to address the aforementioned issues and uphold educational excellence, fairness, respect, and safety for all students and faculties.
Asian American Coalition for Education www.asianamericanforeducation.org
December 20, 2023
Link: AACE Open Letter to Denounce Antisemitism and Advocate for Change at Harvard University: https://asianamericanforeducation.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/12/AACE-Open-Letter-on-Harvard-2023-1220.pdf
- Swann Lee, Phone: 617-651-1328, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the AACE: www.asianamericanforeducation.org
Asian American Coalition for Education (AACE) is a non-political, nonprofit, grassroots national alliance with over 300 partnering organizations nationwide. Since 2015, AACE have been mobilizing Asian communities to stand firmly behind SFFA and exposed the Ivy League college’s anti-Asian discrimination on the national stage. Over the last eight years, AACE teamed up with over 360 Asian American organizations, organized the Boston Rally in 2018 and “Equal Education for All” rally in 2022, encouraged Asian American students to join SFFA’s lawsuits, and filed five amicus briefs. Besides supporting SFFA, we have advanced the cause of equal education rights for the Asian-American community in many other areas, including federal adoption of AACE policy recommendation on college admissions in July 2018, federal lawsuit against Yale University in 2020, support to Asian Americans’ fights for equal education rights in Maryland, New York, Washington, California, Massachusetts and other states. AACE is the proven leader in fighting for Asian-American children’s equal educational rights.