Lara Sheehi, the professor at the center of a discrimination complaint students filed against the university, has a long history of making anti-Semitic statements in lectures, published writings, interviews, and social media posts. As an assistant professor in the school’s Professional Psychology Program, she refuses to acknowledge the existence of the state of Israel and teaches her Jewish students that their mere presence can inflict “violence.”
FreeBeacon (h/t Marvin W) Sheehi also accuses all Zionists of having a “settler psychosis” from which they must be “liberated” in order to interact with “indigenous” people.
“You’re a settler interacting with indigenous people, there’s violence embedded in that no matter what, no matter how good you are,” Sheehi said last year in a podcast interview. “Settlers, liberate yourself from your ideology.” Sheehi did not respond to a request for comment. George Washington University referred the Washington Free Beacon to its statement last week condemning anti-Semitism and affirming academic freedom.
Jewish students reported Sheehi for discriminating against and repeatedly harassing them as part of a required diversity course she taught last fall, according to a complaint filed last week with the Department of Education.
“It’s not your fault you were born in Israel,” she reportedly told one student on the first day of class. Sheehi has declared all Israelis “fucking racist” and said she wants to “destroy Zionism” on Twitter. She has deleted her account since the Title VI complaint was filed.
Roz Rothstein, cofounder and CEO of Stand With Us, which filed the complaint, told the Washington Free Beacon that Sheehi’s “personal politics” should not “cross the line into discriminatory conduct targeting students based on their identities.”
Rothstein says college administrators “too often” fail to “recognize the clear difference between a professor expressing her personal political views, which academic freedom does protect, and identity-based discriminatory and retaliatory conduct, which it absolutely does not.”
Sheehi is president-elect of the Society for Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Psychology, a division of the American Psychological Association.
She and her husband, Stephen Sheehi, who chairs the Middle East Studies department at the College of William & Mary, are both members of the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement. They engage as professors in “explicitly political” work, which they have called “guerilla scholarship.” Sheehi even boasted in an interview last year that their adversarial approach has cost them speaking engagements and jobs.
In 2014, Stephen Sheehi joined a group of scholars from around the world in signing a statement defending Hamas militants for firing rockets at Israeli civilians. He accused Israel of carrying out “collective punishment” after soldiers swept through the Gaza Strip in search of three Israeli teenage boys who were kidnapped and later murdered by Hamas.
Stephen Sheehi is anactivistwithin theBoycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS)movement and was involved in an effort to encourage theModern Language Association (MLA)to boycott Israeli academic institutions.
In July of 2014, Sheehi signed a statement excusing Hamas war crimes and demonizing Israel. Sheehi has also expressed support for disgraced anti-Israel Professor Steven Salaita.
Sheehi is the Sultan Qaboos bin Said Chair of Middle East Studies and Professor of Arabic Studies at The College of William and Mary (WM).
In July of 2014, Sheehi signed “An International Scholars’ Statement on Gaza” that excused Hamas rocket attacks on Israeli civilians, claiming they were a “direct response” to the Israelis “terrifying the entire population of the West Bank.”
The statement accused Israel of “collective punishment” for sweeping the Palestinian controlled territory for suspects and victims following the June 12, 2014 kidnapping of three Israeli high-schoolers on their way home from school by Hamas. The captors murdered the abducted boys, whose bodies were found buried in Palestinian-controlled territory on June 30, 2014.