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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Opinion | Letters To The Editor

Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Blanket generalizations detrimental to creating productive on-campus dialogue

When J Street U at UF was asked to endorse the vigil in memory of three Muslim students murdered at UNC Chapel Hill, our Executive Board unanimously gave its support. As an organization which supports a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict — one Israeli, one Palestinian — we were shocked to find ourselves accused of supporting the “systematic murder of Muslims in Palestine and the Middle East” and as an organization that “actively perpetuates Islamophobia,”  as Students for Justice in Palestine’s op-ed accused last week. Those hurtful statements reflect a deep misunderstanding of the principles for which J Street U stands. The piece also made a number of blanket statements that fail to distinguish the nuances between different Jewish and pro-Israel organizations, which have different strategies and missions. Our organization, J Street U, is the student organizing arm of J Street. We strongly support the well-being and self-determination of the Palestinian people, as well as Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic state.


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Response to Silver’s veganism and vaccine column

The argument made by Andrew Silver in his editorial “Refusing vaccines for veganism is a right” is ignoring a crucial part to the premise. He states that, if an outbreak occurs, then the unvaccinated employee should be put on paid leave or work from home (or in his case, excused from classes). Silver seems to think very highly of himself, and apparently believes that UF does also. Unfortunately, it’s not all about him or his dietary ethics.


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Student organization support of Muslims is hypocritical

The fatal shooting of Deah Shaddy Barakat, his wife Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha has sparked outrage. While mainstream media is still portraying the incident as a killing over a “parking dispute,” we know that this was a hate crime against the Muslim community. In turn, many communities are condemning Islamophobia. But what does their condemnation actually mean? A vigil at UF that happened Friday evening was endorsed by many different student organizations, including the Jewish Student Union and J Street UF, two organizations that actively perpetuate Islamophobia through their acceptance and funding of Israeli apartheid. What needs to be understood is that one cannot claim to stand in solidarity with the Muslim community while simultaneously supporting Zionism and Israeli state-sponsored terrorism against the Muslim world.


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Debate should be filmed

One and a half percent. That’s the percentage of UF students who showed up to watch the Student Government debate Tuesday based on the 500-person estimate by this publication. The Freshman Leadership Council is claiming that the debate was not recorded in any manner — text, audio or video — to protect the integrity of the debate. I was told that the Alligator live-tweeted the event, which is fantastic except that Twitter is nothing but sound bites, and a paper can only print so big of an article. Where is the integrity of an event if 98.5 percent of the university cannot see it in its entirety?


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

The Need for Moderation

If there’s one thing this world has no shortage of, it’s opinions on the State of Israel. There are vocal proponents and vocal oppositions. The spectrum of opinions on Israel’s existence ranges from “shouldn’t exist at all” to “unconditionally” and yet, as with most political things, the middle of the spectrum is largely ignored. Although it may be the least-recognized group of advocates, that’s not to say it doesn’t exist. This is why the need for J Street U on UF’s campus is so pressing. The Middle East is, and always has been, a hotspot for political and religious tension. Ignoring this tension in favor of one group or another is illogical and unproductive. J Street U aims to change this.


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Letter to the Editor: Swamp Party pleased with Senate slate

My name is Ricky Salabarria, and I currently serve as the Swamp Party spokesman. I am very excited to announce that our party’s slate for the Spring 2015 Student Government Elections has been released. After three days of qualifying, slating and interviewing, Swamp Party is confident that we have selected the 50 most qualified and capable students to serve in the Student Senate and bring our university the experience it deserves. 


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Response to previous letter urging UF to cut ties with anti-Palestinian groups

On the very day that political cartoonists in France were murdered by Islamic radicals simply for exercising their right to freedom of speech, Students for Justice in Palestine member Amanda Nelson wrote an opinion piece urging the boycott of the only free country, according to Freedom House’s rankings, in the Middle East: Israel. Aside from her absolute lack of empirical evidence for any of the allegations she hurls at Israel, she provides no proof whatsoever that boycotting companies such as Elbit Systems or Caterpillar will have any sort of tangible, positive effect on even one Palestinian-Arab. 


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

The hidden truth about thin privilege and how you can help

I bet I can predict at least one of your New Year’s resolutions: working out more, eating healthier, losing weight? If I was right, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. This time of year brings a tsunami of reflection that inspires change. This specific tsunami, however, is fueled by a toxic epidemic that has taken hold of our society: thin privilege. On the flip side of discrimination rests a collection of benefits known as privilege. 


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Letter to the Editor: Food Chains

Thank you to the Alligator and to Tenley Ross for doing such a fine job on the story about Food Chains coming to the Hippodrome State Theatre today. I appreciate that Tenley interviewed so many people involved in producing and bringing this incredible documentary to Gainesville for its first ever showing.


Florida Alligator
OPINION  |  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Letter to the Editor

I appreciate the Alligator’s coverage of peta2’s “I, Chicken” virtual reality exhibit and would like to point to a correction in the article. Due to the inclement weather Tuesday, our team had to take down the exhibit. 




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