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Patriots Owner Bob Kraft Pulls Funding From Columbia University Until It Will “Protect Its Students”

Owner of the New England Patriots, Robert Kraft, stated that he will no longer provide funding for Columbia University in light of recent turmoil on its campus instigated by pro-Palestine protestors. 

Kraft called on the Ivy League school to “protect its students” from the “extreme anti-Semitism” from anti-Israel protestors.

Kraft posted a message to X on Monday, expressing his disappointment in the university for failing to sufficiently protect its students, particularly those who are Jewish.  The Patriots owner noted he is “deeply saddened at the virulent hate that continues to grow on campus.

“It was through the full academic scholarship Columbia gave me that I was able to attend college and get my start in life and for that I have been tremendously grateful,” noting his appreciation for the institution that afforded him so much in life.

Kraft then claimed the university he once attended is no longer a school he recognizes in light of the rampant Anti-Semitism and hatred that has spread throughout the country since the October 7 attacks on Israel and subsequent military action in Gaza.

“However, the school I love so much – the one that welcomed me and provided me with so much opportunity – is no longer an institution I recognize. I am deeply saddened at the virulent hate that continues to grow on campus and throughout our country,” his statement added.

Kraft called on Columbia to take appropriate action to protect its students and staff and shut down the protests.  In the meantime, the Patriots owner expressed that he and many others have “lost faith” in the Ivy League school.

“I am no longer confident that Columbia can protect its students and staff and I am not comfortable supporting the university until corrective action is taken. It is my hope that Columbia and its leadership will stand up to this hate by ending these protests immediately and will work to earn back the respect and trust of the many of us who have lost faith in the institution.

It is my hope that in this difficult time, the Kraft Center at Columbia will serve as a source of security and safety for all Jewish students and faculty on campus who want to gather peacefully to practice their religion, to be together, and to be welcomed,” he concluded.

According to reports, Columbia pivoted to remote learning amid the protests on campus.  President of Columbia University Minouche Shafik called for a “reset” as tensions reached a boiling point.  A rabbi for Columbia and its partner school, Barnard College, instructed Jewish students to go home amid the “extreme antisemitism and anarchy” that was plaguing the school.

“To deescalate the rancor and give us all a chance to consider next steps, I am announcing that all classes will be held virtually on Monday,” per Shafik’s statement “Faculty and staff who can work remotely should do so; essential personnel should report to work according to university policy. Our preference is that students who do not live on campus will not come to campus.”

Featured image credit: New England Patriots, CC BY-SA 4.0

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