This week on NBC’s Today, they went through quite the transformation from caring about anti-Semitism on college campuses (with only passing, almost faux attempts at bothsidesism with Islamophobia) to Thursday creeping toward bothsidesism to Friday pouting with pro-Hamas students being identified in public as terrorist sympathizers.
Co-host Savannah Guthrie began Thursday’s segment like the others: “Tensions rising over the war. More Jewish students on college campuses across America are saying they no longer feel safe amid an ongoing rise in anti-Semitic threats against them.”
Reporting from Emory University, correspondent Blayne Alexander said she had “spoken to a number of students who say they have experienced a range of actions from chants being shouted across campus to troubling social media posts, even the defacing of a poster with Israeli hostages”.
Alexander then introduced bothsidesism (even though it’s only one side where students are being assaulted, chased, and signs being torn down):
[B]oth Jewish and Muslim leaders say they’re facing an unprecedented rise in threats of violence. Thousands of miles from the escalating violence…the cloud of war is smothering campuses here in the U.S.
She pivoted back to the plight of Jewish students, touting the gathering of “more than 100 students” for “one of at least six schools statewide to hold solidarity walks after a rise in anti-Semitic incidents on campuses nationwide.”
After sound from two fearful Jewish Emory students, she invoked the anti-Semitic attacks allegedly made by a Cornell University student against their Jewish community.
The rest of the story painted Islamophobia as an equal problem, citing the radical Council on America-Islamic Relations (CAIR) (which did this after the October 7 attack) (click “expand”):
ALEXANDER: The Biden administration is vowing to fight a sharp rise in anti-Semitic and Islamophobic incidents.
ATTORNEY GENERAL MERRICK GARLAND: We are focusing our efforts on confronting and disrupting illegal threats, wherever they arise.
ALEXANDER: Similar to reports of anti-Semitic incidents which have skyrocketed in repeat weeks, the Council on American-Islamic Relations says it’s seen a large uptick, many more often go unreported.
CAIR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR NIHAW AWAD: Overall, there’s a sense of anxiety, uneasiness. Our community is on edge.
ALEXANDER: As the incidents of violent threats soar, many are hoping for a common understanding.
EMORY UNIVERSITY STUDENT [no name or side given]: There has been death on both sides which is a horrible thing. There should be no deaths on any side at all.
ALEXANDER: Now here in Georgia, the leader of a statewide organization for Jewish college students is calling on campuses across the state, including here at Emory, to increase their security, writing in an open letter that students are simply afraid to be on campus.
Friday’s Today came off like CAIR had given them a talking to.
“Let’s focus now on the tensions flaring over the war across this country. Protests on both sides have shut down highways and taken over train stations and there continues to be disturbing incidents of anti-Semitism on college campuses,” co-host Hoda Kotb began.
Correspondent Emilie Ikeda led off with Cornell University prior to making the switch to false equivalency: “Coast to coast, the tenor on college campuses has been increasingly volatile and tense. I’ve heard from students here on both sides of the issue who are fearful of potential fallout for merely speaking out.”
There it is, “both sides”!
The mealy-mouthed rhetoric carried over to her next line: “As the war in the Middle East escalates each day — [EXPLOSION] — the conflict thousands of miles away has become a flashpoint on college campuses here in the U.S., prompting outrage and fear from students on both sides of the issue.”
Ikeda kicked into high-gear some shameless sympathizing with pro-Hamas students and ignored facts such as the rhetoric they’ve spouted and that over 100 faculty members at Columbia signed a letter in support of Hamas’s mass slaughter as necessary to advance a Palestinian state.
Check out the transcript below of how she commiserated with one Columbia student whining about having her face put in the public domain:
IKEDA: With reports of discrimination rising, universities are trying to stop the surge. Columbia University announcing a task force on student safety after officials there say trucks have circled the campus “displaying and publicizing the names and photos of Arab, Muslim, and Palestinian students.” Malak Abuhashim, who attends Cornell and has family in Gaza, says she’s experienced something similar. [TO ABUHASHIM] Is there any part of you that’s fearful in even sitting down in this interview on camera with me today?
MALAK ABUHASHIM: I’m — I’m very — very afraid of — actually. I’ve been put on a website and there’s been articles, like, written about me.
Following another few lines about Cornell, Ikeda said a general “sense of unease” from students has been “exacerbated by clashes like this, near Tulane University in New Orleans.”
What happened at Tulane? Well, in the telling of the student Ikea ran sound of, “[a]n Israel flag was being burned and a brave Tulane student attempted to grab the flag before a fight broke out.”
That sure doesn’t sound like a clash and more like an attack by terrorist supporters against someone for defending Israel.
She ended by returning to Cornell with a Hebrew class needing security, but also she had this comical line about universities: “College campuses have long been bastions for open and honest discussions.”
A surface-level researching of life on college campuses for conservatives would lead one to render this ruling as pants on fire.