- University of Colorado leaders sent an e-mail to students,
faculty and staff Wednesday condemning acts of hatred on the Boulder campus
and urging restraint.
- The "e-memo," sent by President Elizabeth Hoffman
and Chancellor Richard Byyny, comes a day after Jewish groups called on
CU officials to ease tensions on campus.
- CU police reported finding several anti-Israel messages,
including a reference to "Zionazis," written in chalk Monday
and Tuesday on campus sidewalks.
- "The University of Colorado offers a place for free,
open and civil discussion," Hoffman and Byyny wrote. "But the
line is firm: no acts of hate or intimidation will be tolerated."
- This week's vandalism comes as the campus commemorates
Holocaust Awareness Week. Leaders from the Anti-Defamation League and the
Hillel Council of Colorado on Tuesday urged Hoffman to do more in response
to the vandalism.
- "To compare Zionism to Nazism is not only incorrect
but it is unbelievably offensive to anyone who has any experience with
the Holocaust," said Devorah Friedman, director of CU's Hillel center.
- CU police have taken reports on the chalk graffiti, which
includes statements such as "End the Israeli Occupation," officials
said. But police say the chalking isn't a crime, because no damage has
been done to university facilities.
- "It certainly raises the passions in people, but
it appears to be protected speech," CU police Lt. Tim McGraw said.
- In their e-mail, Hoffman and Byyny urged students and
faculty to be especially considerate and tolerant in light of the Sept.
11 terrorist attacks and the ongoing strife in the Middle East.
- Such incidents aren't new on campus, though. Last year,
during Holocaust Awareness Week, vandals uprooted flags and des troyed
a sign that Hillel members had erected on a campus field as a tribute to
victims of the Holocaust.
- More recently, a group of Republican state lawmakers
called on Hoffman to respond to ongoing acts of anti-Israel vandalism on
- The Associated Press contributed to this report. Contact
Matt Sebastian at (303) 473-1498 or firstname.lastname@example.org.