Document Sent to the Student Senate on the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism
On 7/15, amid student debate over whether the Student Senate should recognize the IHRA working definition of antisemitism, the Torchlight Center published a collection of facts and interpretations to help inform Student Senators on the matter.
The Torchlight Center is not a foreign policy, human rights, Holocaust studies, history, or rhetoric think tank. We have spoken with Hillel FSU and Students for Justice in Palestine to evaluate their points to include in this guide, but this document is not endorsed or promoted by them. This is an incredibly complicated issue that Torchlight is attempting to bring a third-party voice to. This voice may be wrong.
This document is not an endorsement or rejection, or even a discussion at all, about Resolution 59. Resolutions of the Student Senate are formal expressions of the majority opinion or will of the Senate. It is at the Senate’s discretion as to how to include Jewish students’ voices in Student Government - as they should be included. This article is a primer about one aspect of one clause in R-59: the recognition of the IHRA definition of antisemitism.
The Torchlight Center cannot evaluate the intentions of those who wrote this definition. When the definition of antisemitism concerns Israel, the Torchlight center is not equipped to nor responsible for evaluating, interpreting, or finding facts about the Israel-Palestine conflict, alleged human rights violations, rights to specific land, or any of the intricacies of the Jewish identity and how it intertwines with the State of Israel. This is a third-party interpretation of the IHRA definition as it concerns the Student Senate at Florida State University.
Disclaimer: The Torchlight Center has two members currently involved in leadership positions in the Jewish Student Union (JSU). Shayna Cohen, the Director of Legislative Affairs, serves as Parlimentarian of JSU and Keren Bard, Legislative Fellow, serves as President of JSU. They did not have control over anything included in this report, not because they are Jewish, but because they are leadership of the Jewish Student Union which has adopted the IHRA definition. The authors of this piece, Patrick Martin and Molly Rimes, have not signed any petition for or against Resolution 59 or the recognition of the IHRA definition, to protect against the possibility of bias.
The document is available below: