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Associated Students


A.S. University Council

Meeting Minutes
Associated Students | San Diego State University


APRIL 23, 2014 – COUNCIL CHAMBERS
CONRAD PREBYS AZTEC STUDENT UNION – 3:30 PM

I. CALL TO ORDER:

Vice President of University Affairs Morgan Chan called the meeting to order at 3:40 PM.

II. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

III. ROLL CALL:

A. Voting Members Present: Morgan Chan, Stav Geffner, Cindy Lopez, Jordan Harrison, Jack Losey, Sean Zaher, Onochie Ani, Alex Ben, Lindsey Schaefer, Marya Edgar, Tasnim El Mezain, Kristina Morales, Raquel Martin, Blaire Ward, Katelynne Willis, Joshua Beverly, Michelle Mitchell, Savannah Sawaged, Cameron Wilmore, Jonathan Cole, Chad Karczewski, Jessika Seekatz, Josh Morse, Becca Cohen, Javier Gomez, Mariah Kelly.

B. Voting Members Absent: Brady Balolong.

C. Ex-Officios (non-voting) Present: Christina Brown, Dr. Timothy Quinnan, Dr. Cesar Ornatowski, Clarice Mendoza.

D. Ex-Officios (non-voting) Absent: None.

E. Visitors Present: Jennifer Esquivel-Parker, Sean Guardian, Josh Garman, Hassan Abdinur, Michelle Ong, Nick Serrano, Lloyd Tisula, Kevin Yabes, Alex Padua, Corey Polant, Dan Coleman, Kathryn Zambon, Sara Mallett, Adam Stafford, CJ O’Brien, Jason Taresh, Derek Feuerman, Leo Carillo, Alexander Shapiro, Lewis Collazo, Seth Kaplowitz, Aleena Nawabi, Eric Palonsky, Nirit Revzin, Michael Kagan, Haim Schwartz, J.J. Surbeck, Sydney Abel, Miranda Koster, Yariv Kohn, Ryan Gilderman, Kelby Kupersmid, Sarah Katalaru, Sheli Grumet, Carlos Perez, Professor June Cummins, Gabriel Benji, Lev Mizan, Ayan Ali, Anisa Hagi-Mohamed, Arwa Alkhawaja, Reva Ballat, Maryan Yusuf, Elias Purmul, Omar Alsulami, Ali Hamad Alsayeh, Sara Giordano, Cathy Pfister, Alexander James, Abdul Hadi, Mohammed Al Salman, Abdullah Jadallah, Ilana Turner, Thomas Negron Jr., Tarawat Azim, Andrew Nasser, Hassan Sughayer, Dina Hamiten, Giovanni Herrera, Jon Davidi, Miko Peled, Jibreel Keddo, Tessa Wiley, Rachel Beck, Steve Kowit, Jessica Williams, Agha Zaun, Joseph Gratzer, Salaheddin Alkawaja, Shubber Mohammed, Sydney Garcia, Jason Edney, Helena McAllister, Victoria Zakina, Janna Ruedisale, Ariana Maaia, Mohammad Jawad, Ahmed Buzeriba, Conor Ryan, Ramy Judeh, Shadia Omer, Amber Furuya, Ahmad Nawabi, Nadine Hassoun, Bo Elder, Nadir Bouhmouch, Osama Alkawaja, Daniel Sirkin, Matt Levitt, Rita Purcell, Shaila Homan, Melisa Garcia, Erika Perez, Lena Barbakh, Robert Worlds, Daniel Galuppo, Arie Modiano, Jackie Tolley, Tina Malka, Joey Leifer, Victoria Zakinova, Angela Zakinova, Professor Jonathan Graubert, Huda Doski, James Byrd, Nader Salem, Lilach Halperin, Farah Abunadi, Joseph McCartney, Camille Lozano, Idil Dalmar, Asmasia Ali, Zainab Mohamed, Brett Kirchick, Sarah Charton, Rebecca Pasik, Pablo Tinoco, Mohamad Hassoun, Brittany Greene, Joshua Spiegel, Sammay Azhaud, Ali Abuelhassan, Ahmad Nawabi, Meshal Saad, Fayes Almalbam, Avital Aboody, Sero Kassabian, David Deutsche, Michelle Negrette, Salem Bortcosh, Sasha Shkols, Christopher Lara-Cruz, Rahwa Weldeselase, Nader Jalajel

IV. MODIFICATIONS TO AGENDA:

It was moved and seconded to approve the agenda of April 23, 2014.

HARRISON/EL MEZAIN CARRIED

V. APPROVAL OF PREVIOUS MINUTES:

It was moved and seconded to approve the previous minutes of April 16, 2014.

EL MEZAIN/SCHAEFER CARRIED

VI. PUBLIC COMMENT:

A. Sara Mallett, Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan Representative, reported:

1. Sara led a unity clap, symbolizing the act of unifying against oppression and injustice.

B. Adam Stafford, CJ O’Brien, Jason Taresh, Derek Feuerman, Leo Carillo, Alexander Shapiro, Lewis Collazo, Phi Kappa Theta Representatives, yielded their time to Sean Guardian, Phi Kappa Theta Representative, who reported:

1. This resolution depicts Israel as the enemy, when both sides are guilty of errors and misconduct.

2. Violations of human rights are happening all over the world, but this resolution isolates Israel when other countries are participants in this crime as well.

3. Human rights have always been a priority, but the isolation of one country by the targeting and isolating one group is not the proper way to address this issue and defend human rights.

4. The passionate SDSU students present today must unite on campus instead to determine a better solution.

5. Sean Guardian yielded his time to Professor Seth Kaplowitz.

• The university has no business in this issue. Individuals in support of the Resolution have been misguided and more investigation is needed.

• The excessive emphasis on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is unnecessary and makes no sense. The passing of this resolution will only bring a future of hate and divisiveness. Instead, we must look forward to a future of hope.

• From a factual standpoint, opinions need to be backed by facts, not passion.

C. Aleena Nawabi, Muslim Student Association Representative, reported:

1. Aleena shares the sympathies of the Afghan people and understands the feeling of living under occupation.

D. Eric Palonsky, Alpha Espilon Pi and Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. Similar resolutions to the one brought before University Council today has sparked violence and hatred at different universities across the state. All students deserve to walk through a campus in confidence that it is a safe place for them.

E. Nirit Revzin, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. This resolution is a waste of time. The adding and changing of clauses is unnecessary and proves that the Resolution does not have a singular direction. Nirit hopes for an end to divestment.

F. Michael Kagan, Alpha Epsilon Pi Representative, reported:

1. This movement stems from the Boycott, Divest & Sanctions (BDS) movement.

2. Every other campus that has passed similar resolutions has had riots and physical abuse occur to student leaders.

G. Joshua Garman, Student, reported:

1. Joshua reviewed the council representatives’ job and referred to clauses in the A.S. bylaws.

H. Haim Schwarte, SDSU Alumni, reported:

1. Vote no against divestment. This resolution demonizes Israel, making it unjust.

I. Jean-Jacques (J.J.) Surbeck, Training and Education About the Middle East Representative, reported:

1. Israel should not be isolated and if the Resolution passes and achieves this, nothing can be solved.

2. J.J. read off a list of illegal invasions that have happened in past years, aside from Israel.

J. Sydney Abel, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. The UN General has no force in International Law. Sydney read a quote from the UN Secretary General about their condemnation of resolutions similar to the Resolution before University Council today.

K. Miranda Koster, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. No one has the right to speak for the Jewish population. The Jewish are proud to be Jewish and are proud to belong to Israel.

L. Yariv Kohn, Student, reported:

1. Vote no on divestment.

2. This resolution has many factual errors. One error is that the Gaza blockade is actually legal.

3.Divestment is against human rights.

M. Professor Johnathan Graubert, SDSU Political Sciences Professor, reported:

1. The charge of anti-Semitism in this resolution is unjustified.

2. Israel is committing crimes in the abuse of human rights and international law. In order to achieve global consensus, the occupation must be stopped.

N. Ryan Gilderman, Alpha Epsilon Pi Representative, yielded his time to Kelby Kupersmid, Student, reported:

1. The authors and supporters of the Resolution should be commended for bringing awareness to the very real issues taking place in the West Bank.

2. To progress from this, we must increase dialogue and create progress. The Resolution has no action plan stated, describing the aftermath of divesting.

3. SDSU should be investing in programs for peace.

4. Voting yes is anti-Israel. Voting no is not anti-Palestine.

O. Sarah Katalaru, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. There are factual reasons to not let this resolution pass. Sarah read off several facts she collected.

2. The University Council must representative their constituents.

3. Passing the Resolution does not protect the future.

P. Sheli Grumet, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. The Resolution targets one group or division, causing separation and promotion of isolation.

2. The BDS movement cannot be brought to SDSU.

Q. Carlos Perez, Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan Representative, reported:

1. Explained why MEChA agreed to support this resolution, expressing their belief that they should support all people that have had their human rights violated.

2.Please vote yes on divestment.

R. Professor June Cummins, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. Vote against the Resolution.

2. Omar Barghouti, the head of the BDS movement, has stated that he is in support of the violence and terrorism of the Jewish people.

3. Voting yes will align Associated Student with the BDS movement.

S. Gabriel Benji, Alpha Epsilon Pi Representative, reported:

1. Expressed how he feels marginalized and attacked by this resolution.

2. The Resolution is political propaganda against Israel.

3. Leaders must lead towards harmony.

T. Lec Mizan, Alpha Epsilon Pi Representative, reported:

1. The Resolution a one-sided story of a two-sided conflict. It also denies the rights of Israeli people.

2. Passing the Resolution will not help Palestine.

U. Ayan Ali, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. Vote yes on divestment and make the right decision.

V. Anisa Hagi-Mohamed, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. Shared a quote by Benjamin Franklin with University Council.

2. Vote yes on the Resolution. Don’t listen to intimidation factors.

W. Arwa Alkhawaja, Student, reported:

1. Vote yes on the Resolution. Children and families in Israel are having their human rights violated.

2. Stop the violence now with Israel and then we will continue to stop the violence in the rest of the world.

3. Reply to the crisis in Israel. Don’t ignore it.

X. Reva Ballat, Student, reported:

1. Shared her experiences of living under the unjust acts of the Syrian government. There is no difference between them and the Israeli government.

2. Show the world you care and vote no on the Resolution.

3. As representatives on University Council, you must be leaders and be proud of SDSU. Make a difference.

Y. Maryan Yusuf, Student, reported:

1. Maryan is proud to be compassionate, despite the argument that passion impairs judgement.

2. The Resolution has facts.

Z. Elias Purmul, Muslim Student Association Representative, reported:

1. Elias made a reminder to all to put ethics before politics.

2. Our money needs to be reinvested in somewhere else.

3. Vote yes on the Resolution.

AA. Omar Alsulami and Ali Hamad Alsayeh, Students for Justice in Palestine Representatives, yielded their time to Sara Giordano, Student, who reported:

1. Vote yes for the Resolution.

2. After speaking to her Jewish grandparents who experienced the Holocaust, Sara learned the importance of standing up and speaking out.

3. One right decision is clear. The choices you make today must be ethical and for justice.

4. Think of future generations: what side of history will you stand on.

BB. Cathy Pfister, Amnesty International and Jewish Voice for Peace Representative, reported:

1. As a resident of San Diego and a former employee of HP Solutions, Cathy supports the Resolution.

2. Cathy shared facts from a report about the Israeli occupation found online, being a documentation of human rights abuses.

CC. Alexander Jama, Student, reported:

1. This resolution is not restricted to the Palestinian people. It is talking about all people.

2. With all this passion, there must be a clear indicator of who is right.

DD. Abdul Hadi, Mohammed Al Salman, and Abdullah Jadallah, Students, yielded their time to Miko Peled, who reported:

1. Support the Resolution and vote yes on divestment. It is principle and it works.

2. If you are against racism, vote to divest.

3. Miko referred to the illegal slavery that happened in the United States’ history. Help to prevent human rights violation of victims in Israel.

4. Choose to be a student council that supports justice.

EE. Ilana Turner, Student, reported:

1. Vote yes on divestment.

2. This resolution is not all about the Jewish people. It helps Palestinians against the occupation that brings terrorism on the Palestinian people.

FF. Thomas Negron Jr., Queer Student Union and Queer People of Color Collective Representative, reported:

1. Vote yes on divestment.

2. This is an issue of human rights. Keep it stable.

GG. Tarawat Azim, Student, reported:

1. Peace and justice is not possible, but this resolution will make a change.

HH. Andrea Nasser, Student, reported:

1. Vote yes on the Resolution.

2. Traveling back to Israel, Andrea experienced a lot of racism.

3. Don’t vote with your own consumer choices.

II. Hassan Sughayer, Community Member, reported:

1. Hassan shared his experiences as a Palestinian being forced out of his home, having it demolished, and being denied the right to go back home currently.

2. He has experienced the injustice by the Israeli government. It is an Israeli apartheid, similar to the African apartheid.

JJ. Dina Hamiten, Student, reported:

1. After living under the occupation, Dina expects our university to stand up for the world.

2. She has the facts from her experiences to support the Resolution.

KK. Giovanni Herrera, Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana/o de Aztlan Representative, reported:

1. Support divestment!

2. Expressed how he does not want to attend a university that is against human rights.

3. Addressed modernization, seeing it as an excuse to unjustly take homes from Palestinians.

LL. Miko Peled, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. There is a difference between Israeli Jews and Palestinians in Israel. There are no equal rights between the two sides and there is segregation and discrimination against both.

MM. Jibreel Keddo, Student, reported:

1. Human rights are valuable, but cannot be accurately measured until death.

2. Palestinians are dying early, due to the occupation in Israel.

3. Voting yes on the Resolution will save lives.

NN. Tessa Wiley, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. SDSU should not ignore their responsibilities and stand on the sidelines.

2. This resolution is a symbol of a worldwide fight.

3. Future platforms will be created so that peace can be discussed.

4. Voting no will allow the fighting to continue.

OO. Rachel Beck, Students for Justice in Palestine, reported:

1. There are facts that support the argument that the Caterpiller bulldozers are bad.

2. The Resolution will not isolate Israel. Instead, it will bring neutrality.

3. Mothers cannot give birth in Israel due to the safety barrier.

4. Rachel wants to ensure that she attends a university that supports her morals.

PP. Steve Kowit, Jewish Voice for Peace Representative, reported:

1. Vote yes on divestment!

2. The Israeli government is horrendous, according to factual reports by the United Nations.

3. All these crimes have been reported in Amnesty International.

QQ. Jessica Williams, Student, reported:

1. The Resolution is not anti-Israel. It supports justice.

2. Everyone has an opportunity to support peace.

RR. Agha Zaun, Student, reported:

1. Agha urges University Council to look at the shirts of all gallery members who support divestment.

2. The Resolution will pass.

3. It was divestment that brought an end to African apartheid.

SS. Joseph Gratzer, Student, reported:

1. Vote yes on divestment.

2. A crater is currently in the center of a Palestinian university campus due to an Israeli bombing.

3. It was Israel that did not let a Palestinian girl get medical care only available in the West Bank.

4. SDSU needs to invest in companies that do not violate human rights.

TT. Salaheddin Alkhawaja, Student, reported:

1. After working for Boeing, Salaheddin speaks against the company that saw only profit from their products instead of the harm they do to people.

2. Do not be scared of divestment.

UU. Shubber Mohammed, Student, reported:

1. We should not invest in companies that are against Palestinians, and instead put our money in good companies.

VV. Sydney Garcia, Anthropology Graduate Student Association Representative, reported:

1. Sydney asks University Council to abstain from voting on the Resolution, because it does not include enough information on the daily lives of Israeli and Palestinian people living in Israeli territories under occupation.

2. This resolution needs more research before asking for support from University Council.

WW. Jason Edney, Student, reported:

1. Addressed the accusations against the Israeli military, speaking from his experiences as a solder in the Israeli military that supported democracy.

2. This resolution is divisive.

XX. Victoria Zakina, Aztecs for Israel Representative, reported:

1. If A.S. removes all references to the BDS movement as a way to stay separate from it, the BDS movement will still use it as support for their movement. The neutrality argument is irrelevant, because SDSU would be aligned with the BDS movement regardless of any edits made.

YY. Janna Ruedisale, Student, reported:

1. This resolution does not target Israelis or Jewish people.

2. Families are persecuted daily. Everything will be divisive no matter what.

3. Stand on the right side of history.

ZZ. Ariana Maaia, Mohamed Jawad, and Ahmed Buzeriba, Students for Justice in Palestine Representatives yielded their time to a video:

1. http://vimeo.com/92350016

AAA. Ramy Judeh, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. The logical fallacies referred to in previous public comments are incorrect.

2. This resolution targets companies, not Israelis.

BBB. Shadia Omer, Muslim Student Association Representative, reported:

1. Vote yes on the Resolution.

2. SDSU must seek justice for the people living in Palestine.

CCC. Amber Furuya, Queer People of Color Collective Representative, reported:

1. This university does not teach us about helping other. Instead, the Palestinians should educate others on helping those whose rights have been violated and our university should create grants for reaching out to the Palestinians.

DDD. Ahmad Nawabi, Campus Community Commission Member, reported:

1. From Operation Cast Lead, many children and civilians were murdered. Schools were destroyed, as well as other acts of destruction.

2. SDSU needs to reinvest in sustainability and rehabilitation in Palestine.

EEE. Nadine Hassoun, Student, reported:

1. Today is our chance to help divest in order to help the Palestinian people.

2. Choose people over profit.

FFF. Hassan Abdinur, Student, reported:

1. Ask yourself what you can do for your fellow human being.

2. Keep in mind that "these people" that support divestment are diverse.

GGG. Bo Elder, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. The Kindergarten school Bo attended as a child was desegregated only four years ago.

2. We all need to thank those who ended the Jim Crow laws, and now is our chance to stop the abuse of human rights of the Palestinians.

HHH. Nadir Bouhmouch, Student Union for Representation and Justice and Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. The Students for Justice in Palestine are all for dialogue. The oppressed people cannot talk, and there must be a change. We need to let people speak for themselves.

III. Osama Alkhawaja, Students for Justice in Palestine Representative, reported:

1. We appreciate all the University Council members for listening to both sides of the argument and believe in the good of people.

2. Regardless of the decision made today, you will hold no ill-will against you all.

3. Thank you for having us and allowing us to present this resolution for approval.

VII. INTRODUCTION OF NEW LEGISLATIVE MATTERS:

A. Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People: (Action)

It was moved and seconded to strike lines 67-69.

MORSE/EDGAR

Josh Morse called to question. It was moved and approved to end discussion on the striking of lines 67-69.

MORSE/HARRISON CARRIED

The motion to strike lines 67-69 was approved, (16-9-0).

It was moved and seconded to strike lines 71-73.

WILMORE/EDGAR

Tasnim El Mezain made a motion to change the source on lines 71-73 to a source from the American Service Friends Committee.

Cindy Lopez called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the motion to change the source on lines 71-73.

ONOCHIE/COLE CARRIED

The motion to change the source in the footnotes of lines 71-73 failed, (6-8-9).

Cindy Lopez called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the striking of lines 67-69.

ZAHER/EDGAR CARRIED

The motion to strike lines 71-73 failed, (2-12-10).

It was moved and seconded to strike 75-77.

COLE/BEN

Cindy Lopez called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the striking of lines 75-77.

LOPEZ/EL MEZAIN CARRIED

The motion to strike 75-77 failed, (9-14-0).

It was moved and seconded to change the source on lines 75-77 to a source from the World Policy Institute.

EL MEZAIN/SEEKATZ CARRIED, (6-4-10)

Raquel Martin called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the approval of the Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People.

MARTIN/LOPEZ FAILED, (9-8-4)

Raquel Martin called to questions. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the approval of the Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People.

MARTIN/EDGAR CARRIED, (15-7-0)

Stav Geffner made a motion to replace the wording of the original Resolution with proposed clauses provided.

GEFFNER/LOPEZ

Marya Edgar called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the replacement of the wording in the original Resolution with the proposed clauses provided.

EDGAR/ANI CARRIED

The motion to replace the wording in the original Resolution with the proposed clauses provided failed, (4-14-3).

Morgan Chan called for a five-minute recess starting at 8:09 PM. It was moved and seconded to begin recess.

HARRISON/ZAHER CARRIED

The A.S. University Council meeting resumed at 8:30 PM.

Cindy Lopez made a motion to postpone the approval of the Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People until A.S. can make a taskforce to ensure the validity of the resolution’s citations.

LOPEZ/WARD

Alex Ben called to question. It was moved and seconded to end discussion on the postponement of the approval of the Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People until A.S. can make a taskforce to ensure the validity of the resolution’s citations.

BEN/ANI CARRIED

The motion to postpone the approval of the Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People until A.S. can make a taskforce to ensure the validity of the resolution’s citations failed, (3-18-1).

As a point of privilege, Cindy Lopez called for a roll call vote.

Voting Results:

Stav Geffner: Abstain

Cindy Lopez: Yes

Jordan Harrison: No

Jack Losey: No

Sean Zaher: No

Lindsey Schaefer: No

Onochie Ani: No

Alex Ben: No

Marya Edgar: No

Kristina Morales: No

Tasnim El Mezain: Yes

Raquel Martin: Absent

Blaire Ward: Abstain

Katelynne Willis: Abstain

Joshua Beverly: No

Savannah Sawaged: No

Michelle Mitchell: Absent

Cameron Wilmore: No

Brady Balolong: Absent

Jonathan Cole: No

Chad Karczewski: No

Jessika Seekatz: Yes

Josh Morse: No

Becca Cohen: No

Javier Gomez: Absent

Mariah Kelly: No

The Resolution in Support of Divestment for the Human Rights of the Palestinian People, with all approved amendments, failed, (3-16-3) as attached.

IX. REPORTS OF CAMPUS LIFE COUNCIL MEMBERS:

None.

X. ADJOURNMENT

It was moved and seconded to adjourn the meeting.

SEEKATZ/ZAHER CARRIED

Vice President of University Affairs Morgan Chan adjourned the meeting at 9:00 PM.