ASUC was met with urges from the public to denounce antisemitism during its weekly meeting Wednesday night.
Public commenters pointed to Senate Resolution 2022/2023 – 016 introduced by Sen. Shay Cohen, which called on the ASUC to denounce antisemitism following the rise of anti-Jewish hate on campus and nationwide.
Speakers noted a lack of support for the Jewish community and called on those present to vocally issue some form of recognition for students within the community.
Public commenters and senators alike discussed alleged bullying that led some senators to remove their names as cosponsors of the resolution.
A few senators used their time to address public comments by stating that the resolution did not have “pro-Palestine” or “pro-Israel” content but was “straightforward” in denouncing its stance against anti-Jewish hate.
“We as an association and as elected officials have a moral responsibility for students as human beings to stand up to hate and violence,” said President Chaka Tellem during the meeting.
Sen. Manuel Cisneros was one of the senators who removed his name from the resolution, stating he would not support the “alienation” of any community. Cisneros said he did not endorse the erasure of Palestinian voices and called on the ASUC to be “representative and welcoming of every culture to the best of our ability.”
Later in the evening, Academic Affairs Vice President James Weichert announced that the Computing, Data Science, and Society division will officially become a new college at Berkeley, a process that will take place next semester. He added that the division will no longer be under the College of Letters and Science.
Weichert also expressed his support for the UC Academic Worker’s Strike during executive officer reports. Out of 36,558 votes cast by student employees across the UC system, Weichert said that 98% voted to strike, including himself.
He noted that the outcome of the vote puts “more pressure on UC to give an equitable and fair contract to the union.”
External Affairs Vice President Bailey Henderson used his report time to call on the ASUC to vote yes on Proposition 1, which appears on the California ballot and would amend the state Constitution to prohibit interference with the right to reproductive freedom. Henderson noted that voting numbers are currently low in California and encouraged those in attendance to vote in the upcoming election.
The meeting concluded with senators using their announcement time to make final comments on SR 22/23-016: Denouncing Hatred Toward the Jewish Community.
Sen. Tyler Mahomes ended his comments by calling out the alleged bullying surrounding co-sponsorship of the resolution and urged his fellow senators to take a stance on the issue.
“Make your own decisions please,” Mahomes said.