BOCA RATON — An event meant for Florida Atlantic University student organizations to promote their clubs was interrupted Wednesday afternoon by a group of several men who set up a table with a banner referencing antisemitic messages.
Danielle Yablonka, a 22-year-old senior studying communications and Jewish studies, is a member of the university’s Hillel of Broward and Palm Beach. Yablonka said she was at the event, called Owl Involved, in the campus’s Breezeway when she was told there was a nearby table with a banner that said, “#YeisRight.” Pictures posted on social media Wednesday show the words “Change my mind” also on the banner.
Yablonka said she and other Hillel members and students “stood in protest peacefully” with their own signs condemning antisemitism near the group of several men who were displaying the banner at the table.
Yablonka said one of the men hurled antisemitic insults at her and made comments like, “Ye for president” and “Kanye is right,” among others.
Rapper Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, wrote in one social media post in October that he would go “death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE” and made other antisemitic comments in interviews. Adidas ended its partnership with Ye after the remarks, and he was suspended from Instagram and Twitter.
After Ye’s post, an antisemitic group hung a banner over a highway in Los Angeles that said, “Kanye is right about the Jews,” banners that said, “End Jewish Supremacy in America” and “Honk if you know its the Jews” were hung over a highway in Jacksonville and someone projected the phrase, “Kanye is right about the Jews” on a building and outside of an end zone at the TIAA Bank Field during the Florida v. Georgia football game in Jacksonville.
Yablonka said she was shocked to see some students approach the group of men and shake their hands or take pictures with them in support.
“This is the first time I’ve ever seen these people on campus, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they were to come back,” she said.
Student Body Vice President Dalia Calvillo, a 20-year-old political science junior, said she learned of the group’s table in the Breezeway about 1 p.m. as she left her office for the day and found a group of about 30 students in the Breezeway “yelling back and forth” with the men, who were not students. Students told Calvillo that the men were “saying very hateful statements toward our Jewish students who were there.”
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