Anger. Destruction. Chaos. It’s societal failure on display.

From USC to Columbia, Penn and beyond, campus takeovers against Israel or for Palestine have erupted — primarily at “elite” universities. (I only use that term as a pejorative now.) We are not seeing “protests” at technical schools or Christian colleges.

There is so much that is so wrong on so many levels playing out across our nation. Sadly, this is both real life and a live “case study” in the breakdown of higher education, the failures in K-12 education — and many failures of today’s Democrat Party.

Yes, the Democrat Party is partly responsible for this mess. Starting with the absence of leadership from Biden, his party has largely been indifferent or muted in the face of antisemitism — or worse, supportive of the anarchy on these campuses. Senator John Fetterman (D-PA) is noteworthy not only for his consistent moral clarity, but also in that he is standing virtually alone.

The delayed, muted message from President Biden speaks volumes.

Whether Biden is weak, indifferent or being paralyzed by fifteen electoral votes in Michigan — a fear of offending its significant Muslim population — it doesn’t matter. 

Biden is a weak president, relegated to trying to buy votes from younger voters — “canceling” student loans, tolerating their riots, and decriminalizing marijuana. Just last week, Biden announced yet another round of vote-buying masquerading as “forgiving student loans” that is unlawful and immoral. Worse, announcing this during these protests on campuses shows a level of tone-deafness and self-centeredness that is a new low.

Another factor is Biden’s open borders allowing in some people who have come here solely to cause chaos, disruption, or worse. An estimated six to ten million have crossed over. Taking the lower six million number, if even one-tenth of one percent of illegal/undocumented people are intentionally seeking to do us harm, that’s 6,000.

The President has failed us — regardless of your faith, regardless of your party.

Moreover, we should recognize the bigger picture: failed policies plus a failed education system. What happens when you mix ill-educated students — some of whom are privileged — plus the children of millionaires from nations that hate America, plus thousands who snuck in purposefully to cause chaos, and then add in the professional, left-wing agitators, the ones who bought or supplied the thousands of identical placards and similar-looking green pup tents spotted from Columbia to USC?

You get chaos and even anarchy nationwide.

Now, add in morally confused, frightened school presidents and local and state officials. We get days and days of chaos — with barricades, violence and student “press conferences” demanding vegan Uber Eats deliveries, while wearing keffiyehs bought from Etsy.

And canceled (or scaled back) graduations. 

As for the American student-protestors — some of whom may have genuine concerns for the Palestinians and oppose war — let’s be clear: it is not illegal or punishable to support Palestinians, oppose Israel, or oppose Israel’s conduct of the war. It is protected speech guaranteed to Americans by the Constitution. 

No one should be arrested for speaking “pro-Palestinian” or anti-Israel, or even anti-Jewish slogans, no matter how vile. However, encampments, barricades, vandalism, hostage taking, blocking students from classes and attacking police or others is criminal and should be treated as just that. Think of it as “teaching the students a lesson.”

Moreover, what is especially troubling is that this hate and vitriol has taken root so easily, so quickly. And, it is spoken, chanted, and spray-painted so proudly. It shows a deeper moral failing.

Academia has so twisted the concept of “tolerance” into a knot that actual threats and acts of violence are being protected on campuses, yet over the past years saying that only biological women should play women’s sports is somehow hateful and shameful — and has become prohibited as speech, let alone policy.

Teachers spend so much time telling young students that they’re so special and that every emotion and feeling is to be valued that they’ve forgotten to teach them that opposing ideas are to be heard, too. And that some ideas or values are wrong. There are actual facts and actual societal norms, customs and moral standards. You have the right to be wrong, but you’re still wrong. And actions have consequences.

Too many broken moral compasses.

This all began on October 7th with terrorists parasailing into a music concert and purposefully, brutally butchering Israeli millennials at a concert. Other terrorists sought out Jewish daughters to repeatedly rape them, while their fathers were forced to watch. And beheadings! This is so heinous, so unforgivable, so deprived that it sets an historic level of evil. Hostages are still being held. These are facts, live-streamed by the terrorists for the world to see.

Yet the unholy alliance on campuses is demanding action — to punish Israel.

Have the students forgotten? Don’t they care? Or, has years of education failure blinded them to facts, and taught them a twisted sense of morality?

Recall that these “elite” institutions — with acceptance rates often in the single digits — treat Riley Gaines like a terrorist, yet welcome actual spewers of hate, while tolerating campus takeovers, barriers being erected, and blocking students from attending class. 

For years, many “elite” universities recruited privileged students from nations who actively oppose the United States. Just as they’ve done for the children of Communist China’s oligarchy.

Why? Because those students paid sticker price to attend Columbia, Penn or USC, or their countries gave millions in donations.

Protestors condemn Israel and the United States, yet praise Hamas, spout socialism and wear Che Guevara t-shirts. All of which is legally protected. But their words, actions and heroes reveal how our education system has failed. They lack an understanding of history and actual morality.

This is both real life, and a live case study in the utter failure of academia where parents and society have been complicit.

Weren’t they taught about the horrors of the Holocaust, that the Germans blocked Jewish students from attending school (before going on to massacre them)?

Weren’t they taught the wonders and accomplishments of America? Taught about the advancements of Western Civilization? Weren’t they taught about real life under communism?

Weren’t they taught that Jews have been living in the land now known as Israel for about 5,000 years? That, in Israel, Arabs and Israelis practicing whatever faith they choose (or no faith), serve in the Knesset, and are judges? That Muslims worship freely in Israel?

Sadly, our students were taught that they were victims in a world of “victims” and “oppressors”—and that they should unite with other “victims.”

Apparently, believing anything makes it right and removes any moral responsibility. These students believe that they invented morality and are the sole arbiters of what’s right.

They have learned a value system that is so twisted that LGBT students shockingly think Hamas would respect them.

The “everybody gets a trophy” generation has arrived on college campuses. And now they’re partnered with anarchists and those who snuck into America in order to destroy it.

I hope it’s not too late to save them.

I know it’s not too late to save the kids in high school, grade school, or younger.

And it’s not too late to ensure that America’s laws, culture and values are protected from the harm that’s being done now.

Have we learned our lesson?

Guy Ciarrocchi is a Senior Fellow with the Commonwealth Foundation. He writes for Broad + Liberty and RealClear Pennsylvania. Follow Guy at @PaSuburbsGuy

12 thoughts on “Guy Ciarrocchi: Campus protests shine the light on failed policies, our failed education system, and antisemitism”

  1. Outside agitators, ungrateful students, students from overseas, a failed education system, immigration, and that there is some unknown organization behind these protests. You’ve managed to hit on every theory used by the Putin Pac to blame everyone else and ignore the fact that this happened organically. You forgot to include the One World government, the U.N., and George Soros. If it were up to you the Joseph McCarthy and the House Committee on un-American Activities would have never have ended.

    Are these protests antisemitic, yes. Are Jewish college students at risk, yes. Have college administrations failed to respond to this, yes. If these protestors had been threating students of color it would have been a matter of days before those students fought back. However what ever nationalist solutions you want are not the answer.

    1. “Unknown organization”. Just to clarify – do you believe China, Russia, Iran act independently or in coordination to undermine and destabilize the US?

  2. Mr. Ciarocchi,

    Are you aware of the “Anti-Semitism Awareness Act” that just passed the House near-unanimously (and with no press coverage, of course!), despite its imposition on free speech and teaching in schools and churches?

    What do you think about it directing the US civil rights bureaucracy to mobilize against “hate speech”, and simultaneously outsourcing the definition of such “hate speech” to a Jewish pressure group, the Anti-Defamation League?

    Do you agree that definition as written by the ADL includes criticism of the Israeli state, unfavorable opinions about Israeli history and Christian teaching about the execution of Jesus?

    Can you square this bill and the lobbying for it IN ANY WAY with the supposed conservative objections to “wokeism” and “cancel culture,” and the supposed conservative commitment to “open discourse?”

    Doesn’t the media blackout on this bill make you the least bit suspicious? Or would you be honest and admit this bill is a clear show of the Jewish power in this country we aren’t permitted to discuss?

    Just overall, have you read the text of the bill and would you care to defend it for this audience?

    1. So once again, yet another hate filled individual has been motivated by this type of article to post a comment. You’re right, how dare schools and churches not be allowed to promote hate. Along with this antiemetic inspired comment “Doesn’t the media blackout on this bill make you the least bit suspicious? Or would you be honest and admit this bill is a clear show of the Jewish power in this country we aren’t permitted to discuss?” By clinging to the lie that Jews control the media

      Or clinging to the myth that Jews killed Christ which has been disavowed by Pope Benedict when he stated that there is no basis in the scripture for the argument that the Jewish people were responsible for the death of Jesus Christ.

      If treating other people with respect and speaking out against those people who hate others for what they is the definiotion of woke. Than I am proud to say that I am woke.

      I hope that Mr. Ciarrocchi is proud that this article, full of conspiracy theories, and how people are going to use it to justify their actions and behavior. Its one thing to be a conservative, its another to promote hate and blame “the other” for his own failings.

      1. Judah,

        Did or did not the ADL just get a big majority of politicians in both parties to define as a prosecutable civil offense their own precise, custom-written definition of anti-Semitism?

        My point is that the Jews make thselves out to be some besieged, put-upon minority when they are in fact the most powerful lobby in America, able not just to extract from US taxpayers tens of billions of dollars per year in unconditional military aid for Israel, but even to get laws passed in the US congress making it dangerous to criticize that.

        Directly Inciting ethnic violence is illegal but “anti-Semitism” is not and should not be. It is pathetic the way politicians, especially the “patriotic, conservative” ones, grovel to the Jewish lobby. Fortunately, people are noticing.

      2. Has anyone read “How FDR kept his partial paralysis a secret from the American public — even while he was on the campaign trail
        Tom Porter May 10, 2019, 11:10 AM EDT”? Was that just another crazy conspiracy?
        People like Dawn Stensland Mendte, television talk show host and news anchor working at WJLP-TV in Freehold, New Jersey, and on WPHT 1210 AM in Philadelphia, think of Gov. Shapiro as a fine person. In September 2023, Governor Josh Shapiro announced that Pennsylvania has implemented automatic voter registration (AVR) for eligible Commonwealth residents obtaining driver licenses and ID cards at Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) driver and photo license centers. By implementing AVR, Pennsylvania joins a group of 23 states with leaders from both parties – including Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Georgia, Virginia, and West Virginia – who have taken this step to promote election security and save taxpayers time and money.
        HOWEVER, did you know that many NGOs with the help of the Biden Administration and others are registering millions of non-citizens for government sanctioned programs like Medicaid, the Affordable Care Act, giving them access to food stamps, lodging, other welfare types of programs including drivers’ licenses? These programs come with the application, opt out voter registration. It is probable millions of non-citizens are being registered to vote. The above referenced States have no ability to stop it.
        Guy and Judah are just distracting Broad & Liberty readers with stupid nonsense.

        1. Speaking of stupid nonsense, all I have to do is look at your post.

          FDR hid his disability, so what. How did being in a wheelchair affect his ability to be President?

          Oh no, immigrants are being registered for government assistance (clutches pearls). The DMV and other agencies require documentation that proves you are a resident and a citizen.

          As far as distracting Broad & Liberty readers with stupid nonsense. You clearly did not bring your “A” game when you wrote this post. You failed to include any conspiracy theories including the U.N., One World Government, and Jews controlling both of the former organizations. Friends of mine who run the black helicopter program got a good chuckle at your post and said you were not a threat to expose anything. Please don’t embarrass yourself like this again, be better.

          1. Judah, go slowly for me. You are smarter than me. You agree the press helped FDR hide information? Conspiracy: the action of plotting or conspiring; a secret agreement. The FDR Administration and the press conspired to hide information from the public. We both agree! Conspiracies do occur, we have an example of an American Presidential administration and the press conspiring to hide information. We agree on that one. Progress.
            You dismiss it as unimportant. But Huzzah! We agree on a simple fact that specific conspiracy occurred.
            FDR hid his disability, so what. How did being in a wheelchair affect his ability to be President?
            Judah (May 8th, 2024, this comment section, 9:16 AM):
            “FDR hid his disability, so what. How did being in a wheelchair affect his ability to be President?”
            Mike Sweeney, simple minded fool: Cool, Judah. We agree that FDR hid something because the press allowed him to hide it. Did I say FDR being in a wheelchair affected his ability to be President? I just pointed out an example where the press hid a truth about what was really occurring real time.

        2. Once again putting words in my mouth.; I don’t agree with you. How did FDR being in a wheelchair disqualify him from being President, it was common knowledge he was in a wheelchair and wore leg braces and in spite of all of this he was reelected multiple times. So it was unimportant.

          Unlike todays 24/7 news. News outlets in the past had deadlines, limited space to print, and were more concerned about the Stock Market collapse, The Great Depression, and WWII. Celebrity gossip was a blip on the radar.

  3. I wish you would have specified that the “consistent moral clarity” of Senator Fetterman is only on this issue. He is a supporter of baby murder and the normalization of sexual perversion, both very immoral positions.

    1. Fetterman supports a woman’s right to chose. How many babies have you adopted, how much money have you donated to organizations that help women with children, do you provide free daycare? The problem with pro life supporters is they no longer care about the mother and child once the child has been born.

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