By Anthony Berteaux
This article is excerpted from a longer piece in the Tower.
When Arielle Mokhtarzadeh arrived at University of California, Berkeley, to attend the annual Students of Color Conference, she had no way of knowing that she would be leaving as a victim of anti-Semitism.
The conference has maintained a reputation for 27 years as being a “safe space” where students of color, as well as white progressive allies, can discuss issues of structural and cultural inequality on college campuses.
For Mokhtarzadeh, an Iranian Jew at UCLA, her freshman year was punctuated by incidents of anti-Semitism that were both personal and met with national controversy. She was shocked during her first quarter in school, when students entered the Bruin Cafe to see the phrase “Hitler did nothing wrong” etched into a table. Months later, Mokhtarzadeh’s friend Rachel Beyda was temporarily denied a student government leadership position based solely on her Jewish identity, an event that made news nationwide.
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