Bill Ackman comments

Bill Ackman is the founder and chief executive officer of the Pershing Square Capital Management hedge fund and an alumnus of Harvard College as well as the Harvard Business School. I’m sure he has generously supported the university in the past, but he has now taken a position of leadership urging alumni to oppose the campus intifada. Yesterday Ackman watched the testimony of the university presidents before the House Committee on Education & the Workforce. They testified at the committees’s hearing on “Holding Campus Leaders Accountable and Confronting Antisemitism.”

Harvard alumna Rep. Elise Stefanik endeavored manfully, if I may say so, to get a straight answer to basic questions. She has posted links to transcripts of her questioning here. Ackman commented on the testimony of the university presidents:

The presidents of @Harvard, @MIT, and @Penn were all asked the following question under oath at today’s congressional hearing on antisemitism:

Does calling for the genocide of Jews violate [your university’s] code of conduct or rules regarding bullying or harassment?

The answers they gave reflect the profound moral bankruptcy of Presidents Gay, Magill and Kornbluth.

Representative @EliseStefanik was so shocked with the answers that she asked each of them the same question over and over again, and they gave the same answers over and over again.

In short, they said:

It ‘depends on the context’ and ‘whether the speech turns into conduct,’ that is, actually killing Jews.

This could be the most extraordinary testimony ever elicited in the Congress, certainly on the topic of genocide, which to remind us all is:

“the deliberate killing of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group with the aim of destroying that nation or group”

The presidents’ answers reflect the profound educational, moral and ethical failures that pervade certain of our elite educational institutions due in large part to their failed leadership.

Don’t take my word for it.

You must watch the following three minutes. By the end, you will be where I am.

They must all resign in disgrace.

If a CEO of one of our companies gave a similar answer, he or she would be toast within the hour.

Why has antisemitism exploded on campus and around the world?

Because of leaders like Presidents Gay, Magill and Kornbluth who believe genocide depends on the context.

To think that these are the leaders of Ivy League institutions that are charged with the responsibility to educate our best and brightest.

On the bright side, our congressional leaders deserve accolades for showing tremendous leadership and moral clarity in their statements, by the questions they asked, and the respectfulness with which they conducted the hearing.

It was a masterclass of how our government and democracy should operate.

If you have time, please watch the entire hearing. Throughout the hearing, the three behaved like hostile witnesses, exhibiting a profound disdain for the Congress with their smiles and smirks, and their outright refusal to answer basic questions with a yes or no answer.

There is certainly much more to be said, but this is a decent start. Aaron Sibarium considers the contradictions in the Free Beacon story “Anti-Semitism Hearing Highlights Ivy League Hypocrisy on Free Speech.” The edifice of free speech on campus is a house divided against itself.

Everything on Ackman’s Twitter account is of interest, including the comments the tweet above has generated (such as Jonathan Haidt’s here). Ackman invites readers to take in the whole thing via the link below to the C-SPAN video.


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