Amidst this conversation of campus climate, we must seek opportunities to elevate and reinforce the University’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Plan’s goal to ensure “all campus community members are welcomed and supported.” At this time, given that many students may feel targeted, we need to find constructive ways to support one another and come together on campus.
The current divestment resolution presented to Central Student Government (CSG) singles out Israel, spreads misinformation, and reinforces negative stereotypes. The impact of the passing of this resolution will be to further divide us as a campus community.
As students who support the safety and security of Palestinians and Israelis alike, we want CSG to know that this resolution does not represent us, nor the values of our Michigan community. It demonizes Israel and calls for divesting from companies that provide for its security. This resolution assigns absolute blame to only one side of a complicated conflict. Both the Palestinian and Israeli narratives have value – yet, only one is presented in this resolution. Movements such as UMDivest and the national Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement are counterproductive and drive both parties, on campus and in the region, further away from one another and from a possible solution.
We appreciate and respect CSG’s tireless efforts to represent our vastly diverse student body, listen to all voices, and provide a space that validates all narratives, including those expressed in this petition against the resolution and presented by these signatories.
We desire to be part of the solution towards peace and coexistence, that can only be achieved through mutual understanding, constructive dialogue, and the recognition of the rights of all people. This divestment resolution does not lead us towards any of these goals; it only leads to greater division and polarization on our campus.
We urge CSG to reject this one-sided resolution and focus its efforts on uniting our campus community in more constructive ways.