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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

‘One Down’: Penn’s President Quits After Refusal to Condemn Jewish Genocide

'Two to go...'

(Luis CornelioHeadline USA) University of Pennsylvania President Elizabeth Magill resigned on Saturday following her refusal to condemn disturbing chants calling for the genocide of Jewish individuals, the university announced Saturday.

Magill faced intense scrutiny during a congressional hearing, alongside leaders from Harvard University and MIT, regarding whether advocating for the genocide of Jewish people violates the University of Pennsylvania’s rules of conduct.

Scott L. Bok, the chairman of the board of trustees, announced Magill’s departure in press statement issued on Saturday afternoon.

“I write to share that President Liz Magill has voluntarily tendered her resignation as President of the University of Pennsylvania. She will remain a tenured faculty member at Penn Carey Law,” Bok said, adding that Magill agreed to stay on as interim president until a replacement is found.

In a statement, Magill expressed gratitude for serving as the institution’s president. 

“It has been my privilege to serve as President of this remarkable institution. It has been an honor to work with our faculty, students, staff, alumni, and community members to advance Penn’s vital missions,” Magill claimed. 

Her resignation followed a threat from major donor Ross Stevens, who vowed to withdraw a $100 million gift after Magill inexplicably declined to outrightly condemn explicit calls for the genocide of Jewish individuals. 

During the hearing, Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., questioned Magill directly: “Does calling for the genocide of Jews violate Penn’s rules or code of conduct?” 

“It is a context-dependent decision,” Magill replied. “If the speech becomes conduct, it can be harassment.”

Stefanik persisted, asking, “‘Conduct’ meaning committing the act of genocide? The speech is not harassment? This is unacceptable.”

Magill’s testimony drew widespread criticism, including from Gov. Josh Shapiro, D-Pa., and conservative state Sen. Doug Mastriano, R-Pa.

“That was an unacceptable statement from the president of Penn,” Shapiro remarked. “Frankly, I thought her comments were absolutely shameful. It should not be hard to condemn genocide.”

Echoing Shapiro, Mastriano said, “Her tolerance of antisemitism on campus is abhorrent.” 

Critics took to Twitter to praise the resignation, directing attention toward Harvard President Claudine Gay and MIT President Sally Kornbluth.

“One down. Two to go,” said Stefanik on a lengthy Twitter post. “This is only the very beginning of addressing the pervasive rot of antisemitism that has destroyed the most ‘prestigious’ higher education institutions in America.”

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