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Arizona State U. Latino organization suspended for calling for the death of various groups

An Arizona State University Latino student group has been suspended after it called for the deaths of “pilgrims,” “settlers,” and “Zionists.”

Earlier this month, the ASU chapter of MEChA, the Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán, not only advocated the deaths of those noted, but that of the “boer” (South African white settlers) as well on its Instagram account.

The Instagram post also noted that MEChA doesn’t condemn Hamas, nor its surprise attack against Israel on October 7 which killed over 1,000 Israelis.

According to The State News, MEChA has appealed the suspension. An ASU spokesperson said MEChA, like all student groups and individual students, is expected to follow the university’s Student Code of Conduct.

In response to the suspension, other university MEChA chapters and “non-student political organizations in Arizona” such as the Communist Party USA Phoenix and Trans Queer Pueblo, signed on to a letter blasting the university, blaming Jewish groups, and demanding the ASU MEChA’s reinstatement.

“We believe that this action taken by the university was the result of targeted pressure by Zionist groups from both on and off campus,” the statement reads. “MEChA de ASU has long been an active participant in the struggle for Palestine at ASU, and we believe they are being punished for that role.”

MORE: MEChA de ASU demands Kyle Rittenhouse be booted from campus

With the suspension, ASU “continues their own long legacy of McCarthyite attacks on communist student groups,” the letter continues, and cites a U.S. Supreme Court case that says “state colleges and universities are not enclaves immune from the sweep of the First Amendment.”

The groups also demanded ASU “reaffirm” the right to “advocate for a people facing genocide by a colonial occupier.”

As noted by the State News, shortly after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack ASU said it is “important to foster open dialogue and understanding during such challenging times,” and that the university “is a place where diverse opinions and perspectives are valued” and which encourages “respectful conversations that promote mutual understanding and empathy.”

ASU President Michael Crow told the student paper in November that while “you can’t suppress what people have to say about how the democracy is working,” you also cannot “allow for people to knock the buildings down and start fighting with other people” — in other words, “there are limits.”

MORE: Police escort Jewish students from ASU meeting after rocks thrown

IMAGES: MEChA de ASU/Instagram

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Dave has been writing about education, politics, and entertainment for over 20 years, including a stint at the popular media bias site Newsbusters. He is a retired educator with over 25 years of service and is a member of the National Association of Scholars. Dave holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Delaware.