Rich Eisen typically sticks to sports talk, but he said he had to speak out about top college presidents who he said gave “frightening” answers when asked if calling for the genocide of Jews was acceptable.
During the “Rich Eisen Show” on Wednesday, the sports host slammed the “unacceptable responses” from university presidents of Harvard, UPenn and MIT who were asked in a congressional hearing if calling for “genocide” warrants a violation of their respective campus’ codes of conduct or rules regarding bullying and harassment.
The school officials asserted it all depended on context, noting that the schools would take action if the speech became “conduct,” as previously reported.
Eisen said the answers from the school presidents not being able to say “unequivocally, yeah that violates it” and “equivocating with a bunch of word salad and nonsense” was frightening.
“Oh so we have to have genocide before you kick someone off the campus?” the sports journalist said. “How about the context of being against genocide of all? By just allowing that speech makes people comfortable to commit the genocide. You understand that? By not being uniquivecal in saying ‘yes, this is a violation. And anybody who violates it is off campus. They can’t go to Harvard, Penn or MIT.'”
Today, @richeisen took time out from our usual show fare to respond to the unacceptable responses from @penn @harvard @MIT presidents at a US House hearing about anti-semitism on campus. pic.twitter.com/YUwltJhy9W
— Rich Eisen Show (@RichEisenShow) December 6, 2023
“By saying ‘well it depends on this, that and the other thing,’ makes them comfortable to commit the genocide,” he added. “It is the lesson you learn when you walk into museums of tolerance or Holocaust museums around the world. Including ones that I’ve been to recently in Berlin, Germany and Tel Aviv, Israel.”
“It’s the first lesson you learn and I can’t believe you got to tell people who lead these instituions of higher learning that,” Eisen continued. “I can not believe the answers I heard. It is frightening to see those answers from people in leadership and higher education. Are you kidding me? The answer is yes when you’re advocating against genocide against anybody that’s a violation of code of conduct and is a form of harassing and bullying. Forget the context.”
Eisen said he has family members that went to those respective schools and before that hearing he would’ve been advocating for his three children to follow in their footsteps. But he said after seeing the “answers I saw and heard” from the school presidents — not a chance.
“I never thought in a million years that I would never want to send my kids to these schools. Forget that,” he added.
A previous version of this article incorrectly listed Penn State rather than UPenn among the universities represented in the hearing.