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Princeton belly dancers condemn Israel’s ‘intentional genocide’

Student clubs feel the need to weigh in on unrelated issues

Princeton University’s belly dancing club became the latest group to feel the need to weigh in on an unrelated political issue.

“The student belly dancing company at Princeton has issued a statement condemning the alleged ‘intentional genocide’ in Gaza,” The Princeton Tory wrote on X (formerly Twitter).

“We recognize the ongoing cultural and historical erasure, violence, forced famine and ethnic cleansing in Gaza as an intentional genocide,” the message stated.

The Tory, a conservative student publication, shared the full statement with The College Fix.

“Despite not being a cultural group, Raqs Belly Dance company acknowledges belly dance’s Middle Eastern and North African roots and influence,” the statement read.

“We deeply respect and appreciate the heritage and people who have paved the way for us and empowered us to express our bodies and artistry freely,” the group wrote. “As such, we stand in solidarity with those affected whose bodies and freedoms have been attacked and undermined by this crisis.”

It is one of several statements from other groups criticizing the arrest of Princeton activists who occupied Clio Hall.

The belly dancers are not the first ostensibly nonpolitical group to find common cause with a liberal viewpoint.

For example, the University of Pittsburgh’s Outdoors club helped raise money for Planned Parenthood and other abortion groups.

Even student journalists demanded Central Connecticut State University cancel a showing in 2022 of the film “What is a Woman,” by Matt Walsh and The Daily Wire.

The campus Society of Professional Journalists joined with the Tea Club, the Climbing Club, and the Golf Club to demand cancellation of the film, which is critical of gender ideology.

This is not new.

When I was at Loyola University-Chicago, seemingly unrelated groups, like a program called Achieving College Excellence, which mentors low-income students, endorsed Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions.

The campus Red Cross chapter backed BDS, though the Chicago branch of the national organization distanced itself from that endorsement.

Academics and university staffers do this, too.

For example, a 2020 letter from University of Notre Dame faculty calling for a pause to the Supreme Court nomination of Amy Coney Barrett included none of her law school colleagues. None of her actual peers raised concerns about her joining the Supreme Court based on their personal experiences with her.

But seven Notre Dame librarians wanted her confirmation stopped. So did some professors in the theater, gender studies, and physics departments.

The letter did not work, as the Senate confirmed Barrett to the Supreme Court.

It will take more to stop a conservative jurist’s nomination to the highest court.

Maybe next time the belly dancers can release a statement.

MORE: Northwestern needs to do more to support Jewish students, Hillel leader says

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Matt has previously worked at Students for Life of America, Students for Life Action and Turning Point USA. While in college, he wrote for The College Fix as well as his college newspaper, The Loyola Phoenix. He holds a B.A. from Loyola University-Chicago and an M.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He lives in northwest Indiana with his family.