Protests Against Israel Are Seen as a Type of “Artistic Performance”

Ken Griffin, the founder and CEO of Citadel, has strong opinions about the anti-Israel protests that have been occurring on American college campuses. In a recent interview with the Financial Times, Griffin likened the protests to performance art, suggesting that they do not actually help Palestinians or Israelis.

Griffin criticized the protesters for their tactics, stating that “Freedom of speech does not give you the right to storm a building or vandalize it. That’s not freedom of speech. That’s just anarchy.” He expressed concerns about the direction of education in the US, noting that colleges have become consumed by a narrative of systemic racism and injustice.

This is not the first time Griffin has spoken out against anti-Israel sentiment on college campuses. Earlier this year, he announced that he would be pausing his donations to Harvard University over its handling of on-campus antisemitism. Griffin, who has been a generous donor to Harvard for over four decades, expressed concerns about the type of education that students are receiving.

Griffin’s criticisms highlight the influence that Corporate America has on higher education, with leaders like him holding immense power over the career prospects of college graduates. ExxonMobil CEO Darren Woods recently stated that his company would not be interested in hiring students who participated in anti-Israel protests, and investor Kevin O’Leary warned that such actions could negatively impact job prospects.

Ultimately, Griffin believes that universities should return to embracing Western values and preparing students to uphold these values in their future endeavors. It remains to be seen how colleges and students will navigate these challenges in the coming years.

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