BREAKING: TUPD investigates removal of mezuzah from Jewish student’s doorpost
An act of anti-Semitic vandalism occurred in one of Tufts’ dormitories on Saturday, according to an email sent to the Tufts community on Wednesday evening. The email was signed by University President Anthony Monaco.
According to the email, a Jewish student had discovered his mezuzah – an important Jewish symbol traditionally affixed to the doorposts of Jewish homes – removed from its doorjamb.
“Whatever the intention, the removal of this important symbol of the Jewish faith is anti-Semitic and has caused harm,” Monaco wrote in the email. “It’s a moment we can all learn from. All members of our community should feel comfortable displaying and expressing their faith, and all members of our community should respect these displays and expressions.
Monaco said the Tufts University Police Department has opened an investigation into the incident but has not yet been able to identify the people or person responsible for the mezuzah removal.
He noted that the removal of the mezuzah comes among a documented increase in anti-Semitism across the United States, in higher education and in Tufts himself. Monaco also reaffirmed the university’s commitment to understanding how to combat anti-Semitism in Tufts.
“As I shared with professors and staff at a town hall last week, we have launched an initiative to understand how anti-Semitism manifests itself in Tufts,” Monaco said. “This initiative includes focus groups and a survey of all undergraduates who will be graduating next week.”