The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Kansas State Collegian

The independent student news publication at Kansas State University

Kansas State Collegian

Letter to the Editor: K-State Athletics’ ties to Athletes for Israel disrespects international students

Since the summer of 2023, K-State’s athletic programs have been involved with Athletes for Israel. By participating in initiatives like creating care packages for Israel, they are complicit in the genocide of the Palestinian people. While the university administration intentionally chose to remain silent on the contemporary genocide, some students and faculty took note of how our leadership is favoring complicity over humanity.

K-State Athletics is not directly affiliated with the university, but these actions still reflect our campus. Making care packages is far from a neutral stance and sends a conflicting message to our Palestinian, Arab and Middle Eastern students and faculty members, who are directly or indirectly affected by these actions.

As students, we must hold our administration accountable for their actions to reflect the view of the K-State community. Much like the civil rights protest in 1968 with Martin Luther King Jr. to the Black Lives Matter protests in 2020, K-State students have spoken out of such injustices in our community. This is a moment when we, as Wildcats, must urge our administration not to be complicit in a genocide and alienating international students.

The international community condemned Israel’s actions with South Africa initiating proceedings at the International Court of Justice to formally condemn Israel for acts of genocide. Additionally, Mexico and Chile have urged the International Criminal Court to conduct an investigation into Israel’s military actions in Gaza. The Youth Democratic Socialists of America argues that the partnership with Athletes for Israel, even indirectly through care packages, could be seen as aligning our university with these acts of genocide. Let us not lag behind the rest of the world in condemning these actions as a university.

It’s important to clarify that criticism of the Israeli government’s policies is not synonymous with antisemitism. Antisemitism is reprehensible in any form and should be denounced. However, expressing concerns about the actions or policies of the Israeli state, much like critiquing any other government, is a matter of political discourse and should not be conflated with racial or religious prejudice.

The K-State YDSA calls on all K-State students and alumni to sign our petition to demand an end to the partnership with Athletes for Israel. Let’s come together and make our voices heard to ensure our university remains a place where every member, regardless of nationality or political stance, feels valued and respected.

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