You do not have to endorse SJP, join our group, or know everything about Palestine. But if you find yourself agreeing with even some of the positions below, you should definitely support divestment:
- You support ethical investments
Investment in violence against Palestinians is only one of many ways that our university engages in unethical investments. We also invest in corporations that profit from the prison industrial complex, that supply the bombing of civilians in Pakistan and Yemen with drones, that profit from being major polluters, and that are allowed to engage in massive labor violations without consequence. If you believe that our university should only invest in companies that behave in an ethical manner, you should also support this specific case of divestment.
- You are against violence
The companies we are focused on are enabling and profiting from massive ongoing violence against a group of people. If you don't want your university's funds going towards any violent ends, then you should support this specific campaign as well. It is a specific case that fits a broader moral position against investment in violence.
- You believe that students should have a say in how their funds are invested by the Regents
The UC Regents didn't ask anyone before they invested funds that benefit students into these companies. However, as the biggest part of the UC community, and the people most affected by its decisions, we should have a say in our university's investment policies. By supporting divestment we are saying that it is not ok to shut students out of the process and that we are reclaiming our voice in the governance of the university.
- You believe in a one or two (or five) state solution
The goal of divestment isn't to promote a particular political solution. It is to remove our own investments in violence against Palestinians. There is a wide spectrum of views in our group on the future for Israelis and Palestinians, but that diversity does not change our unity around divestment. Although divestment is portrayed by some of its opponents as a secret movement to support one state, we believe that even the staunchest supporters of a two state solution should support divestment because there is no two state solution in which Caterpillar bulldozers will be demolishing homes in the Palestinian West Bank or in which HP will be servicing checkpoints between Palestinian towns.
- You believe in being neutral on this situation
Currently, our university invests millions of dollars of student funds into companies that enable and profit from violations of human rights. This puts the university in a position of support for Israeli policies, because they would not be possible to maintain without those companies' involvement and the UC investment in said companies. In other words, Our university is not neutral right now. If we divest, we will not have funds invested in violence by either side, making us neutral on this issue.
And, most importantly...
- You would act the same if it was your community
Imagine for a moment that your tuition was being invested in companies that supported violence against your family and community. How would you feel? How would you react? Would you ask that those investments stop? If your answer is yes, then you can understand the situation for Palestinian students in the UC, many of whom are from the occupied Palestinian territory or have family there. They should not be forced to invest in their own community's suffering.