After a supposedly racist student senate president was removed for expressing his Catholic views, a petition to remove his replacement has amassed almost 3,500 signatures in just a week. Last Friday, the Florida State University Student Senate voted to remove Jack Denton from office due to his comments in a group chat of Catholic students. Denton was warning fellow Catholics that support of Black Lives Matter and the ACLU effectively supports causes that are not in line with traditional Catholic doctrine.
Ahmad Daraldik, a Palsentian Muslim student born in Ramallah, was selected to replace Denton. But now there are calls for Daraldik to step down himself. Soon after Daraldik took office, screenshots surfaced of “antisemitic” posts from Daraldik’s Facebook account.
“We need diversity and having someone who is Muslim as senate president to represent Muslim students is a great step,” one concerned student posted on Facebook. “However we need someone who will represent everyone and Ahmad does not like Jewish people or Israel. This is not okay and he shouldn’t be senate president. Photos from 2013 and a photo from 2019 show his views have not changed.”
The post contained screenshots allegedly from Daraldik’s Facebook account including language like “stupid jew” and “#fuckisrael.” Daraldik later confirmed that at least one of the posts in question came from his account, and did not deny any others.
FSU students put together a petition to send to Campus Administration to yet again impeach a sitting senate president, the petition has so far amassed over 3,400 signatures.
“Ahmad Daraldik, the current FSU Senate President, made antisemitic remarks in multiple social media posts,” reads the petition “These posts were exposed right after the previous president was removed from his position for transphobic remarks. [Daraldik] says, ‘Fuck Israel’ ‘Stupid Jews’ and compares the Israeli government to Nazi Germany’s genocide on the jews. These antisemitic remarks are not welcomed on FSU’s campus, in the United States, and most importantly, on this EARTH! There is no justification for his remarks, and needs to be removed from his position of power.”
Daraldik released a video explaining his recent trip in August to Palestine, and why he chose to post a picture with the caption “#fucktheoccupation #fuckisrael.”
He explained that he posted the caption after having a negative experience at an Israeli checkpoint when traveling to the West Bank. He doubled down on his words.
“I was dehumanized, I was humiliated, and I was upset,” said Daraldik. “So yes, I took a photo with the statue of Nelson Mandela given to my people from the people of South Africa as a symbol of hope to end the apartheid. I made the post on Instagram to release my frustrations about the situation that persecutes my family, my friends, and all those considered second class humans in our own country. What would you have done if you were in that situation?”
Cindy Chamides, president of Noles for Israel told Campus Reform that while Daraldik’s experience may be valid, his words are unacceptable. “I’m not questioning Ahmad’s personal experiences or his right to free speech. Countless Israelis and Palestinians have traumatic experiences from the conflict, (including some of my Israeli friends),” said Chamides.
“What I can’t accept is someone elected to represent students saying and writing things that are blatantly antisemitic,” Chamides added. “For those of us who are descended from Holocaust survivors, it’s especially painful for an elected leader to lie about and exploit what our families went through for his own political agenda. He needs to take responsibility, step down, and learn from his mistakes.”