Brown University investigating anti-Semitic graffiti

March 19, 2016  

Police are investigating anti-Semitic and homophobic graffiti found on a Brown University residential building, Associated Press reports.

The building is home to the Beta Rho Pi and Zeta Delta Xi fraternities. Beta Rho Pi is a Jewish frat, while Zeta Delta Xi is known for having many LGBT members. The graffiti was scrawled on the building’s walls, halls and bathrooms.

A resident posted on Facebook that “One message was directly across from my door, apparently reacting to the Hebrew writing and mezuzah on my door.”

University President Christina Paxson sent an e-mail to the entire student body, in which she wrote, “I’m disturbed, disgusted and disappointed that Brown community members would do this, but am, sadly, not surprised.”

The message emphasized that Brown “is committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive, engaged campus and a safe and secure environment for every member of the campus community. Incidents that threaten the participation and belonging of members of our community are personally difficult and communally unacceptable.”

Students and faculty members suggest that the incident may be related to a planned talk on transgender issues. The talk was canceled after pro-Palestinian students objected to it being held in the Jewish student center. A petition against the talk claimed that the campus Hillel, which co-sponsored the event, defends “Israeli state’s policies of occupation and racial apartheid.”

Brown is an Ivy League university located in the US state of Rhode Island.

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