Mark Cuban sends uplifting message to Jewish college students facing anti-Semitism on campus

In a recorded video message shared by Hillel International on Thursday, Cuban told Jewish college students, ‘These are crazy times, but you know what, for Jews, it’s always at some level a crazy time.’

By Shiryn Ghermezian, The Algemeiner 

American billionaire and entrepreneur Mark Cuban told Jewish students on college campuses to be proud of their Jewish heritage and stay strong amid the sharp rise in antisemitic and anti-Israel activity across institutions of higher education in the US since the start of the Israel-Hamas war last month.

Following Hamas’ deadly terrorist attacks in southern Israel on Oct. 7, anti-Israel rallies and antisemitic incidents have been rampant on US college campuses, with some even turning violent. Some of the more prominent incidents include the Jewish community at Cornell University being threatened online with graphic violence of rape and murder, a Jewish student being violently assaulted at Tulane University in New Orleans, and at Cooper Union in New York, Jewish students were locked inside the school library as pro-Palestinian students protested outside the door.

Anti-Israel activists on campuses across the country have also held demonstrations where they’ve chanted “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” — a slogan widely interpreted as a call for the destruction of Israel, which is located between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.

Read  Just 1 American college has adopted IHRA definition of antisemitism

In a recorded video message shared by Hillel International on Thursday, Cuban told Jewish college students, “These are crazy times, but you know what, for Jews, it’s always at some level a crazy time.”

The owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and co-star of Shark Tank shared a personal story of being physically and verbally bullied for being Jewish when he was 12 years old. He said that at the time, he went to his father and asked why he was being abused by another kid.

“[My father] tried his best to explain things to me but the core understanding, and what I wanted to share, is that there’s always going to be people who hate us. Period. End of story. And there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it,” Cuban explained. “But our lives and who we are is not defined by who hates us. It’s defined by who loves us and who we love. Because from that, comes all our strength, comes all of our power.”

“There may only be 15 or 16 million of us in the whole world, but that love and that connection is stronger than anything anybody else can do,” he concluded.

Cuban grew up in Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh, and when his family moved to a different neighborhood in the city, he was one of just two Jewish students in his elementary school, where he faced antisemitism. He talked about his Jewish identity at Hillel International’s Global Assembly 2022 in Dallas.

Read  Harvard group posts 'despicable' antisemitic cartoon, apologizes