Billionaire demands Harvard, UPenn, MIT presidents step down over genocide of Jews controversy

Billionaire hedge fund manager Bill Ackman has demanded that the presidents of Harvard, MIT, and the University of Pennsylvania resign from their posts immediately.

Ackman issued the demand on the social media platform X this Tuesday after the presidents — Harvard president Claudine Gay, MIT president Sally Kornbluth, and University of Pennsylvania president M. Elizabeth Magill — testified before Congress.

What upset Ackman were the stunning answers the three women coughed up when asked by Rep. Elise Stefanik whether students calling for the genocide of Jews on campus violates their specific school’s code of conduct.

Listen:

“If the speech turns into conduct, it can be harassment, yes. It is a context-dependent decision,” Penn president Magill replied.

Harvard President Gay likewise said “it depends on the context,” and MIT President Kornbluth said it’d only violate rules “if the speech turns into conduct.”

In other words, calls for genocide would only violate their schools if actual genocide was actually committed as a result of the calls. Simply put, if the students calling for genocide suddenly started butchering Jews, only then would it be a problem.

Ackman was outraged, to put lightly.

The answers they gave reflect the profound moral bankruptcy of Presidents Gay, Magill and Kornbluth. Representative @EliseStefanik was so shocked with the answers that she asked each of them the same question over and over again, and they gave the same answers over and over again,” he wrote in a lengthy X post.

“In short, they said: It ‘depends on the context’ and ‘whether the speech turns into conduct,’ that is, actually killing Jews. This could be the most extraordinary testimony ever elicited in the Congress, certainly on the topic of genocide, which to remind us all is: ‘the deliberate killing of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group with the aim of destroying that nation or group,'” he added.

He continued by stressing again how messed up their replies were and by calling for all three to resign immediately in disgrace.

“The presidents’ answers reflect the profound educational, moral and ethical failures that pervade certain of our elite educational institutions due in large part to their failed leadership. Don’t take my word for it. You must watch the following three minutes. By the end, you will be where I am,” he wrote.

They must all resign in disgrace. If a CEO of one of our companies gave a similar answer, he or she would be toast within the hour,” he added.

Ackman went on to blame university leaders like all three for the explosion of anti-Semitism rocking campuses nationwide.

“Why has antisemitism exploded on campus and around the world? Because of leaders like Presidents Gay, Magill and Kornbluth who believe genocide depends on the context. To think that these are the leaders of Ivy League institutions that are charged with the responsibility to educate our best and brightest,” he wrote.

“On the bright side, our congressional leaders deserve accolades for showing tremendous leadership and moral clarity in their statements, by the questions they asked, and the respectfulness with which they conducted the hearing. It was a masterclass of how our government and democracy should operate,” he concluded.

He’s not the only one who’s lashed out at the three presidents and the schools they represent. Everybody from alumni to even incoming students have been firing back.

Look:

Current students also fired back.

Talia Khan, a graduate student at MIT and president of the MIT Israel Alliance, told the the Jewish Insider that the Jewish Insider that Kornbluth’s responses in particular were “horrendous” and “crazy.”

“If anyone were, God forbid, calling for the genocide of any other ethnic group, for sure those people would be kicked of campus. The only time it’s a controversy is just because it’s Jewish people. And it was textbook dehumanization of Jews,” she said.

Vivek Saxena

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