The Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism

University of Michigan student: I was forced to attend ‘antisemitic lecture’ comparing Netanyahu to Hitler

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Ann Arbor, MI – An undergraduate at the University of Michigan said she “was forced to sit through an overtly antisemitic lecture” on Thursday, which compared Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Adolf Hitler.

Alexa Smith, a senior, said the presentation was part of the Penny Stamps Speaker Series, which arts and design students are required to attend.

The image, shared by lecturer Emory Douglas, a graphic designer who served as minister of culture for the Black Panther Party, branded both Netanyahu and Hitler with the caption, “Guilty of Genocide.”

“In what world is it ok for a mandatory course to host a speaker who compares Adolf Hitler to the Prime Minister of Israel?” Smith asked in a Facebook post shared on Friday:

Rick Fitzgerald, a spokesperson for U-M, told The Algemeiner that Douglas’ lecture centered on the “vast body of work” he produced, most during his time with the Black Panther Party.

“His presentation included a video and nearly 200 slides with images of his work,” Fitzgerald said. “He presented and discussed a wide array of topics and subject matter, much of which was focused on the oppression of people across the globe by governmental powers.”

“The Stamps program is intentionally provocative and we are clear with our students about this,” he continued.

Part of the introduction to the event includes a disclaimer emphasizing the diversity and independence of speakers, which the university does not “control or censor,” Fitzgerald added.

He said undergraduates only need to select and attend 10 of 14 scheduled Stamps events to receive the required credit.