Does Islamophobia Color Some Support of Criminal Charges Against the 'Irvine 11'?

hate-speech-on-campus.jpg
Critics of Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas's decision to seek criminal charges against the 11 students arrested for interrupting the speech of Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren last February at UC Irvine include national and statewide organizations, community leaders, esteemed UC Irvine faculty, and Facebook groups.

Officials at the district attorney's office add an equal measure of support for charging the students has poured in as well. The Simon Wiesenthal Center, which operates the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles, recently added its voice to those commending prosecution of the "Irvine 11."

Another group cheering the filing of charges is raising eyebrows--and YouTube video views.



The pro-Israeli group Stand With Us released the video above, titled "Demonstrators for 'Free Speech' Gather to Deny Free Speech to Others," which juxtaposes footage of the Irvine 11 interrupting the Israeli ambassador on Feb. 8, 2010, with images and recordings from the Feb. 1, 2011, protest in front of the DA's Santa Ana office in defense of the students.

The loud voices of student protesters are heard, as are those of Irvine 11 sympathizers such as UCI comparative-literature professor Rei Terada, who is recorded saying the students will "bring honor to the university." This is among a number of scenes followed by the quote "Why would anyone defend this kind of uncivilized tactic?"

Roz Rothstein, CEO and cofounder of Stand With Us, explained her organization's approval of criminal charges. "I couldn't understand why they [the Irvine 11] were being defended because it was so hostile," she said. "They behaved inappropriately, and they didn't follow the obvious rules of civil discourse in the university."

She knows firsthand how boisterous the Oren protesters were, since she was in the audience that evening. She adds that she was sitting behind the person who "was texting everyone before they stood up" at Oren's speech, which is cited in the misdemeanor charges alleging students conspired to drown out the ambassador.

Asked whether her disapproval of the student dissenters had anything to do with her organization's pro-Israeli stance, Rothstein claimed, "The face and ideology has nothing to do with it."

An examination of the StandWithUs.com website shows it was founded in 2001; is based in Los Angeles; and also has offices and chapters in Orange County, New York, Denver, Michigan, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, the U.K., Australia and Israel.

The coalition describes itself as an "international education organization that ensures that Israel's side of the story is told." DVDs are available on the site, such as Hate Speech On Campus, which features various university campus speakers, including Abdel Malik Ali, who has frequently been hosted by UC Irvine's Muslim Student Union--and who is frequently charged with making extremely anti-Semitic statements.

Articles on alleged anti-Jewish activities on various campuses are also included. Links to some articles describe Palestinians as "coddled victims on whom the world has spent billions and who have rejected one peace offer after another."

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53 comments
Aaron Elias
Aaron Elias

Yea.... this article makes absolutely no mention of Islamophobia. Unless it's suggesting that pro-Israeli organizations are inherently Islamophobic, which is inherently a stupid and ignorant thing to do.

Todd
Todd

As UC Irvine professor Mark LaVine pointed out in a LA Times piece, “the ‘Irvine 11’ played into deeply ingrained stereotypes of irrational and unreasonably angry Muslim men.”

If people had some preconcieved emotional base feeling that Muslims act or are a certain way, "the Irvine 11" reinforced this belief.

The truth is that the Irvine 11 and the MSU represent a tiny percentage of Muslims in Orange County. They are just loud and get a lot of press coverage.

Khalid
Khalid

The true joke is that is takes a woman to defend the Irvine 11. Rei Terada speaks on their behalf and not one imam will go against this blatant travesty against my religion. Irvine 11 are not Muslims in my eyes. They must not have allowed themselves to be humiliated like this.

Todd
Todd

I hate stupid.

There are some people who probably have a stronger inclination to prosecute because the students were Muslim.

But I think there are some people who think the students should not be punished at all. Because of their hatred of Israel, they think the student’s actions were justifiable. In other words, they feel it was okay to violate the rights of Oren and those who attended the meeting because they think their cause is bigger than the rights of free speech. Or even worse are those who don't understand the First Amendment and think the students were exercising their protected rights of free speech.

The bottom line to me is that if I take time out of my day to attend a lecture in an auditorium at an university I don’t want some college kids deciding who or what speakers are allowed on the campus to speak. If they don’t like a speaker, they should not get a hecklers vote.

Maybe the university has sufficiently punished the students so these students, other students or other student groups will be deterred from these tactics in the future. I don’t know. Has the university released the sanctions they imposed on the students?

Oh, and it sounds like Rei Terada doesn’t have a clue.

Jadams
Jadams

She isn't drinking kool aid, you just hate everyone that tells the truth. Remember Sabra and Shatila, Dair Yasin, Gaza, many other cities in palestine? need I say more.

Jadams
Jadams

The problem is that you are assuming that this kind of persecution would happen if they were baptists, and that's the flaw in your argument, it would not. The problem with you people you do not realize how hateful you are towards the muslims, unfortunately, you don't realize how many jews are controlling the talk radio arena, and they have brainwashed you all with their lies and deception. There is a god out there who can see through all evil people.

jew
jew

hey ltpar, i think you're drinking the jew-aid...is it really just to kill 1000 people for every israeli death, as they did in gaza and lebanon.. how bout them bombing the lebanese into the stone age? zionists and their supporters have lost all sense of decency.. they have taken the position that they can screw with anyone they feel threaten their existence.. if the arabs had that attitude, how long do you think israel will last?

Dkmfan
Dkmfan

It's all freedom...right,

Figure you have a Jewish kid from LA (Jon FLASHMAN) protending to be a power in the local GOP, A white kid from........Irvine turned lawyer and Islamic defender????

This is all an act. Let's get to work, T-RACK is deflecting attention from some of the real issues facing the county, The OCR are happy to report it and the bloggers are happy to play it up.

Meanwhile, $20K a yer for UCI, and a subpar education.

stupid jews
stupid jews

oh please, no one is fooled by your double standard.. the next time someone from the ADL or the radical zionists disrupt a meeting,, how much you wanna bet they dont even get arrested..

Michelle
Michelle

The DA and supporters are completely taking is out of hand. Those students should absolutely not be faced with CRIMINAL charges for their actions-- its unprecedented and unnecessarily being done to attract way more attention to the situation and give these kids a bad rep. It's an abuse of authority. The university provided a sufficient punishment and it should have been left at that level.And importantly, this isn't the first time an Israeli representative's speech has been disrupted in Califonia : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

...This also isn't the first time students in our country have stood up and spoken out for their political beliefs.

hitler
hitler

fuck israel, not its people but fuck the state, I dont know why we support them

Katy
Katy

StandWithUs.... hahahaha... I should have known. FREE THE ELEVEN

Ageofknowledge
Ageofknowledge

Of course a modern liberal is so lobotomized as to be unable to make a distinction between a worldview based on submitting the earth and everything in it by the sword with say a worldview that doesn't advocate that. No surprise really.

Muslimsareterroristpigsperiod8
Muslimsareterroristpigsperiod8

Islam is not a religion and should not be recognized as such. It is a complete way of laws that entirely conflict with the US Constition. If we don't stop them from coming and kick them out now, we'll all be living in the 7th century again, worshiping a moon god pedophile!

steveg68
steveg68

This article seems like a Yelp-style review of the StandWithUs.com website.

Simon Weisethal center supports the case, as does StandWithUs. Big news, huh?

It seems more like a baseless complaint to stir up sympathy for the protesters, rather than information that anyone can really use.

I do suggest checking out the Ali video. He's a black man bandying about the word Jew with the same vitriol that a 1950's white robed KKK member would be spewing the N word. Sad stuff. I guess people like him are the reason StandWithUs was formed.

junior
junior

Does Islamophobia Color Some Support of Criminal Charges Against the "Irvine 11"?

No - the Islamists brought this on themselves.

Roz Rothstein, StandWithUs
Roz Rothstein, StandWithUs

Roz Rothstein, StandWithUs: I never said that I was "happy about the eleven being charged."I said I was not surprised that they were charged because they demonstrated such hostility by not allowing the speaker his right to free speech, and they denied the audience the freedom to hear the speaker they came to hear.There is nothing to be "happy" about here. There is only the hope that this does not happen in the future.

Gilstein
Gilstein

A phobia is an irrational fear of something. After 9/11, the subway bombings in London, train bombings in Spain, shoe and underwear bombers, embassy and hotel bombings, and so many other real threats I don't know how anyone can say that fear of Islamic fundamentalists is irrational. Wake up and smell the Turkish coffee. The threat is real, just ask the thousands of people who have lost family and friends to Islamic terrorists.

Rider I Anti-Economic Warfare
Rider I Anti-Economic Warfare

Well the Problem is with Islamaphob, is it is much like Cathlathalasim phobia back in the day. The US had just come and revoted against a Catholic dominated leadership, where as Islamics still have huge amounts of areas where the Church holds huge amounts of sway. This is similar to where we see most of the anti-freedom rhetoric coming from in the Middle east. It is not a Church of Religious freedom in areas it is a church of hate and anguist againts freedom. Isreal was given the land by the world to live on after they were almost genocided. Palenstine did not exists as the Muslims leaders of that time did not even recognize the tribal areas of that area. The idea that a speech should be stopped is bad, however, protests if done in a proper manner are ok. Sometimes having a phobia is a natural security measure, much like we did with the Catholics, we are not a Catholic country we are a freedom of religion and dominate Christian which is the very moderate side of Catholism. However, Islam, does not have a moderate side to its religions and beliefs of Allah and Mohammand. Personally I have Muslims friends and they are all for US freedoms and when they go to church they are just like me they talk about their religion and how the ideas of old can be used for today to create a more peacefull tolerant society. However, it is those that use religion for hate and anger that creates the phobia, currently, Christians not so bad, Ireland still has some hot spots and other places of the world too, Catholics along with the Christian anguist groups, however, whole Muslim countries based on similar ideas of Church rules state as the Catholics have hate freedom and what it means. It is just the same reason why we are a moderate people vote in Christians and not Muslims or Catholics. Phobia means scared, when scared there is a reason. I love the Islamic world and think there are great folks and there are bad folks. However, the power coming from the Islmaic church as per majority is not for peace and tolerance and self controll, and is more like the Catholics during the Jesuits time of dark ages. I think a little phobia is normal, I mean we all have phobias of police officers, which keeps us in line with the laws as we are afraid to get in trouble or we get nervous when we see them even if we are not doing anything wrong. However, with Muslims it is just more like a phobia to allow them power in a free country, which keeps the free country in line with its morals and ethics of freedom and not religous dominated church run states. I think the Muslims world has a long way to go before the free world has no phobias of them. We still have Catholic phobias for our rulers that has been hundres of years. Then again, the US being the civilizier in parts of the Islamic world where their governments where not able to help civilize does not make it easier for the free world. As the Muslims world sees us like a force of invasion and not as a force of help. It would be just like if the Communist China came to the US to help build it up, we would go to civil war too.

Cesar Chivo
Cesar Chivo

"Islamophobia" is not a word. Please stop with the cancerous growth of new "phobias"

Gilstein
Gilstein

This was not a spontaneous outburst but a planned disruption as such it is by definition a conspiracy. these students tried to keep others from hearing a professor from speaking his mind. besides showing they don't belong in a university they demonstrated a perverse sense of free speech. After the DA gets through with them the Feds should go after them for attempting to deprive Ambassador Oren and others of their First Amendment rights.

gil stein

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

This whole incident is a farce. I can only assume that the DA is looking for targeted contributions for future campaigns. The organized interruption was rude yet not unusual. It is over and should not be pursued as this DA is pursuing it.

English Major
English Major

Chinyere Amobi - Honestly dear, your writing is terrible. It's unintelligible. I don't think you are ready to write professionally. If you want to pursue journalism you have a long way to go. Sorry.

tired of the excuses
tired of the excuses

i dont know whats worse, rothstein's lying or her hypocrisy... does anyone really think that the fact that the students were muslims did not play a part in her decision? thats why i cant stand the jews, they figure that the gentiles are so stupid that they would fall for their lies... how much you want to bet she's the first one to disrupt a meeting of the iranian president or the hamas leader was there?

junior
junior

Khalid,

Your comment is facetious, right? I would not think that you would put ISLAM'S VICIOUS MISOGYNY on display for all to witness purposefully - would you?

Ihateusc
Ihateusc

speaking of stupid, oren did finish his speech without any problems after the kids were escorted out.. so there was no denial of speech as the genius todd suggests

Ronnie
Ronnie

Just like modern conservatives are so pretentious and self-righteous that they attack others without any sort of provocation whatsoever? No surprise really.

Jadams
Jadams

You're religion is not a religion. You should review your history, you will see that you have a much darker history than the religion you're criticizing. Most large scale murders that took place throughout history were attributed to your religion.

Katy
Katy

how many Palestinians have lost family due to Jewish terrorists aka the IDF? tens of thousands.....

Just A Thought
Just A Thought

As someone who has neither Muslim nor Jewish leanings (as atrocities have been committed by Israelis and Palestinians alike) , I must say that it is embarrassing, on both sides, the lack of grammar, punctuation, and cohesiveness in the posts, especially since this is about an institute of higher learning. Yes, the "protesters" disrupted the speech, and as such, deserve to be prosecuted. Do I think that the prosecution of these students is, at least partially, politically motivated? Yes, I do. However, the aggressive stances, as portrayed by these protesters, seem to support the fact that prosecution is necessary. Veiled threats by supporters do nothing to help the cause. There is no "honor" in screaming and displaying belligerence towards someone, even if you fundamentally disagree with their views; it just makes you and your position less credible. I support the students right to protest, but please do it within the confines of the law, and the First Amendment. You have the right to free speech, but you may not speak in any manner you wish. That is the point of a civil discourse; how do you listen if you are screaming?

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

Unfortunately, many of the writers for this paper are not very able.

Pablito
Pablito

your snide comment betrays a bad writer in yourselves, Major English. Otherwise, you would have demonstrated particular weakness with her writing and suggested how she could improve. You probably just hating on her for exposing the role of the right-wing groups in persecution of political activism. Cindy, keep on writing sistah and let the shallow hater bite their elbows out of envy.

Roz Rothstein
Roz Rothstein

You hate the Jews? Sorry to hear it. See a psychiatrist. Meanwhile, it doesn't matter what religion the people were who acted so inappropriately. Could have been Jews or Christians, would not have mattered. Its what they did that counts. Their actions. Universities need to be places for civil discourse. We need to be able to count on it. On February 8, a group decided that they would not allow civil discourse to take place. I hope that I never see anything so hateful again.

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

Your comment is offensive and should be removed.

Khalid
Khalid

Not facetious in any way. While I have no direct proof, one can speculate that members of Irvine 11 (those being UCI students) attended classes taught by Rei Terada and other women instructors, they ate at the Pippins and Mesa Court commons (hardly keeping halal), they walked the Ring Road where they socialized with fraternity boys advocating alcohol and stared at sorority girls who know no dignity or shame. Irvine 11 are religious "halflings", Muslim in name only, and in reality, so is MSU in general. Unless they abide by Sharia and behave in a manner befitting a self-respecting Muslim man, these kids do not deserve the support of my community.

Todd
Todd

I meant hecklers veto. .

The objective of the students was clearly was to stifle free speech. According minutes of a MSU meeting on February 3, 2010, “our goals should be that he knows that he can’t just go to a campus and say whatever he wants.”

The Dean of the UC Irvine Law School wrote a piece that I think you should read. He clearly states: “Students and others who disrupted an address by the Israeli ambassador to the U.S. can't claim 1st Amendment rights.”

http://articles.latimes.com/20...

Just a Thought Again
Just a Thought Again

Okay, Muslimsareterroristpigsperiod8 and ShatteredUSA, you are the worst examples of free speech I have ever read. Muslims are not terrorists, nor pigs. A few, or maybe more than a few, Muslims Extremists are the problem, but when you tar all for the actions of some, you classify yourselves in that same category. People may not believe as you do, but please, do not denigrate others. Speaking of the Constitution (and be default of the subject, the Bill of Rights), please don't throw the conflict argument out unless you can back it up. Melting Pot, remember?

Jadams
Jadams

You're simply an ignorant, hateful, racist jerk. Go educate yourself before you listen to the bullshit in the media. Try to form your opinion of others based on your knowledge of the facts, not based on hype and lies that are fed to you by the media.

Ondgo247
Ondgo247

You can't rationalize with hate driven irrational extremists. Tired of Excuses, Jadams and the lot are no different than skinheads, nazis, black panthers, la raza, cair, etc. they just have a different twist on their hatred.

Jadams
Jadams

You should be ashamed of yourself pretending you're civil and all. You know you are a liar who pretends she does that because she is offended by the belligerence of these students, meanwhile, people like you are the ones that assault and attack others who oppose your point of view with much more aggressiveness. You are simply a hypocrites as everyone else in your class. Just admit you're an israeli supporter and stop hiding behind the americans. You people would see america the moment america criticizes or gives up Israe.

jews smell
jews smell

well, roz, according to the zionist like foxman and the ADL, the whole world hates jews.. hmm, i wonder why, since you all have such pleasant personalities.. lol

junior
junior

Fucking incredible ....... no hope.

Todd
Todd

@tired

Chemerinsky’s area of expertise is the First Amendment. He has taught courses on it to law students. He has written many books on the Constitution. One book of the book’s topics was the conservative’s assault on the constitution. Again, in this case, he is taking the classic liberal position, not the conservative position.

You seem blinded by the us vs them mentality. To you he is a Jew and that is all that really matters. He cannot be objective if he is Jewish.

Maybe I have just been trolled….

mexicans are too damn fat
mexicans are too damn fat

@todd- actually, a truly liberal viewpoint allows for peaceful protests, as in the 60's with the vietnam protests...ive listened to the dean and read his writings and he is uniformally liberal, except in this instance.. thats why his statements in this case sticks out like a sore thumb.. listen, i dont care if jews only care about jews, but at least be intellectually honest about it.

Todd
Todd

You are a lost cause.

By the way, he is taking the classical liberal position. He is not taking a conversative position with his piece.

Ihateusc
Ihateusc

oh, you mean the opinion piece by the noted jewish attorney, erwin chemirinsky? isnt it ironic that this supposed liberal should take a conservative viewpoint when israeli politics is concerned? dr. chemirinsky is a hypocrite and his views mean nothing to me

Ondgo247
Ondgo247

islam, like christianity and all others is not a race, it's a religion / cult...how does that equate to being a racist? And, the majority of muslims are Asian, not arab. It is however the Johnny Come Lately of cults, considering it's well documented that Jews/Hebrews were in the middle east and Mediterranean thousands of years ago....long before christ 2,100 years ago, and islam wasn't conjured up until over 600 years after that.

Sounds like the only one being an ignorant, hateful jerk is you because someone disagrees with you. However, that tends to be the norm for extremists.

Ondgo247
Ondgo247

I would have thought....ETC... would have covered it dumbass. I've already posted hate comes in all colors, however, where is my hypocrisy?

What I didn't leave out was you and jadams based on your lame, hate based commentary.

Ihateusc
Ihateusc

ondgo247... dont be hypocritical.. hatred comes in all colors, and yes, they include radical zionists and religious jewish fanatics... however, you conveniently left them out of your diatribe

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