The LA Times today reports on demands made by student activists that candidates for student government sign a pledge to not take part in sponsored trips to Israel.
Activists succeeded in pressuring 17 of 30 candidates to sign the pledge to refuse trips sponsored by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the Anti-Defamation League or Hasbara Fellowships.
One student candidate said "It seemed unnecessary," Singh said, adding: "We spent a lot of time talking about what we thought about Israel." He added that he had gone on a ADL sponsored trip as a history and economics major so he could "see the region with my own eyes."
The administration at UCLA is concerned about the activists pressure to limit discussion and the lingering effects of the effort.
Chancellor Gene Block sent an email to the campus Friday, saying he was disturbed by the events in the campaign. He asked for more tolerance and said administrators would try to find ways to avoid similar instances in the future.
"I am troubled that the pledge sought to delegitimize educational trips offered by some organizations but not others," he said. "I am troubled that the pledge can reasonably be seen as trying to eliminate selected viewpoints from the discussion."
UC President Janet Napolitano also weighed in, saying she shared Block's concerns. "The principles of civility, respect, and inclusion ... should also govern our campuses," she said. "The actions of these students at UCLA violate these principles."