Rantz: UW students postpone antisemitic encampment for having too many white saviors

Apr 25, 2024, 9:41 AM | Updated: Apr 29, 2024, 11:21 am

UW Palestine encampment...

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators protested at the University of Washington's Gerberding Hall in Seattle Thursday night. (Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

(Photo courtesy of KIRO 7)

Activists with the UW Progressive Student Union (UWPSU) announced they are postponing Thursday’s “UW Palestine encampment” because there were too many white students involved. The group received criticism for not including Muslim and Arab students in the organizing. And now you have warring factions of extremists quibbling over who will get credit for demonizing Jews and Israel.

The encampment was scheduled for Thursday morning at the University of Washington (UW) in Seattle. UW administration privately told Jewish leaders that the school did not intend to intervene with the direct action unless “the event escalates and threatens life safety.” Still, the predominantly white UWPSU opted to call off the encampment in order “to make sure this encampment is a better reflection of the UW community, and having even greater unity with Muslim, Palestinian and Arab students.”

“We want to be part of a much larger coalition of groups and make no mistake, WE WILL HAVE A UW ENCAMPMENT! We want to make sure everyone’s voice is included and this action is as safe, secure, and strong as possible,” a UWPSU Instagram statement said.

Why did UW students with ‘white savior syndrome’ postpone the encampment?

Students criticized the White Knight students online, calling them opportunists.

“you guys need to learn basic organizing skills truly this is so incredibly opportunist it’s insane!! LISTEN to our concerns. listen to arab & muslim students. don’t announce actions like this in advance. postponing this event is not enough,” purported student Jess Schutz said on the UWPSU Instagram account.

Another user added: “I really hope you make sure to take proper security precautions this time and learn what operational security means. Without prioritizing security for all the students involved, the action is hollow and reckless. These issues are happening repeatedly and reflect badly on you. Please do better and actually get security training and have procedures.”

UWPSU promised an update on Friday as to the next steps.

Of course, there was unhinged, left-wing criticism. It’s Seattle

Before the postponement was announced, students foreshadowed the inevitable controversy.

UW Law student, identified as Yoseph with the bio “from the river to sea,” previously asked, “Were there any conversations with Palestinian orgs or students about this encampment?” UWPSU’s account said “yup.”

User Amber Pesce, who says “they/them” are a member of the UW Honors Program, chided UWPSU for having “zero community support in this bc of your inability to center Palestinians and Arabs and this is so poorly planned.” Another user, Sofie, implored the extremists to “please listen to the Palestinian, Arab and Muslim students criticizing this event and cancel it.”

The pushback was so intense that UWPSU deleted criticism posted on their wall. It, too, sparked backlash. An unidentified user said, “Hey, also wondering if y’all could address deleting the comment about an apparent lack of Arab leadership for this encampment.”

Not everyone supported postponing the antisemitic encampment.

“What about all the people who want this to happen ASAP. Announcing this and then pulling it back is irresponsible. You’ve put people in danger who decide to show up because they didn’t see this slide,” Instagram user Bailee McCauley said.

More from Jason RantzUW Seattle activist declares ‘we don’t want Israel to exist’

This is a very ‘Seattle’ update

This cancellation could be a headline straight from the Babylon Bee, yet it’s classic Seattle through and through.

White progressive activists often pride themselves on championing marginalized communities, even though it’s always in a patronizing tone. There’s a peculiar and unsettling irony in how the organizers and the allegedly offended community members are more concerned about who gets credit for vilifying Jews and Israel, all while echoing Hamas’ rhetoric. It’s equally troubling that the University of Washington’s administration chose not to intervene, presumably to avoid upsetting the white progressive extremists who they believed were advocating on behalf of a so-called marginalized community.

The activists at UW, along with their faculty allies and the spineless administrators, have exposed themselves as an utter farce. If their actions weren’t so profoundly dangerous, posing real and significant threats to the safety of Jewish individuals, we might find humor in their absurdity. However, given that this inaction will likely only encourage the continuation of UW-endorsed hatred and lawlessness, it’s decidedly no laughing matter.

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Rantz: UW students postpone antisemitic encampment for having too many white saviors