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Machete-wielding New York art professor fired again after ‘Zionist’ rant: report

Cooper Union second school to let her go in eight months

Artist Shellyne Rodriguez has lost a second college teaching job within the span of about eight months — this time for what she described as a “Zionist” rant on social media.

Rodriguez is no longer employed at Cooper Union School of Art, a private college in Manhattan, the New York Post reported this week.

It appears she was fired in late January, according to an Instagram post from the school’s Students for Justice in Palestine chapter.

Campus spokesperson Kim Newman told The College Fix the school does not “comment on personnel matters” when contacted Monday about Rodriguez.

Rodriguez began teaching at the school last fall after she was fired from Hunter College in May after tussling up a pro-life student table and later threatening a journalist and his photographer with a machete, as The College Fix reported last fall.

Now, she is not teaching at Cooper Union either, and Rodriguez herself said the reason is because of things she wrote on social media, according to the New York Post.

“Cooper Union has fired me because of a social media post I made about ‘Zionists,’” Rodriguez wrote in an email to students, according to the pro-Palestinian student group. “This is fascism. Y’all are learning about it in real time.”

In a post on her personal Instagram page, which is currently listed as private, Rodriguez described former Bronx Borough President Rubén Díaz Jr. as a “dirty f—ing roach” and “a Zionist lapdog,” the New York Post reports.

Rodriguez also urged a rent strike against Jewish landlords and people who support Israel during a recent CUNY for Palestine virtual panel, according to George Washington University law Professor Jonathan Turley’s blog. What’s more, she urged people to target individuals who support Israel, saying, “Find them, go to their offices, don’t let them sleep,” according to the blog.

Turley described Rodriguez as a member of higher education’s “radical chic” who are “leading the mob and silencing others.”

The College Fix contacted Rodriguez for comment through an email address listed on her personal website, but she did not immediately respond.

Students for Justice in Palestine wrote on its Instagram page the “firing represents an intense escalation of McCarthyist repression meant to intimidate and punish those in support of a Free Palestine, and must be resisted to prevent its further normalization and the ongoing genocide in Gaza.”

Rodriguez, an artist from the Bronx, was the subject of national news attention last spring after the videos of her actions attracted widespread attention on social media.

In the first video, on May 2, Rodriguez berated pro-life students at a Students for Life display table at Hunter College, grabbing materials on the table and pushing them toward the students.

A second video from May 23 shows her holding a machete to the neck of a New York Post reporter who went to her home to ask about the Students for Life incident.

Rodriguez followed him outside and chased him and a photographer around a vehicle with the machete, according to the video.

The Bronx District Attorney’s Office said she later pleaded guilty to harassment and menacing charges.

MORE: NYC art prof who threatened reporter with machete gets new teaching job

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About the Author
Micaiah Bilger is an assistant editor at The College Fix.