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ASCSU votes to fund Chabad Passover event after reaching bylaw compromise

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Chabad board member Vlad Miller shares his frustration about the lack of communication between ASCSU and Chabad. (Photo by Abbie Parr)

ASCSU and Jewish organization Chabad of Northern Colorado met Thursday to discuss and vote on whether or not ASCSU would continue to fund Chabad’s annual Passover celebration, which is set to take place Friday April 22. Chabad was already approved for funding, but after an ad was posted suggesting money donations, it was unclear whether they were breaking an ASCSU bylaw regarding charging students.

Originally, ASCSU was going to vote yes or no on the funding itself, however both ASCSU and Chabad reached a compromise that satisfied both parties.

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Towards the end of the meeting, Rabbi Yerachmiel Gorelik proposed finding an alternative to the yes or no vote. In the compromise, Chabad will create a separate website where people can sign up for the Passover event and have the option to donate. The donation would go toward Chabad and have no association with the Passover event. 

In a vote of 4 to 1, ASCSU agreed to fund the Passover event as long as the donations were going straight to Chabad and not the Passover celebration.

Initially, ASCSU was going to fund the Passover celebration after a decision made in September to give $3,000 to Chabad to help pay for the Passover event. 

ASCSU bylaws do not allow funding for events that are considered fundraisers unless the money is paid back, and based on the way Chabad worded the ad, the event fit this definition.

“We have been putting on this event for 10 years.” said Michael Lichtbach, a former Chabad president. “we have never run into a problem like this before.”

Chabad board member Vlad Miller said he believes the issue was that there was not enough communication between ASCSU and Chabad. He said he hopes in the future that more communication will help to make sure this doesn’t happen again. 

“Last Friday our funds were frozen because it was understood that outside parties were going to fund our event,” Miller said. “This was not our intention, we needed to communicate more, but in the end of the day, this event is for the students and we want it to continue for them.”

Because ASCSU did not know there would be donations at the event when Chabad first applied, the situation was not clear as to whether or not the Passover event would be a fundraiser.

ASCSU Director of Finance  Katrina Roberts agreed that there was some miscommunication.

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“The problem we are seeing, which is a miscommunication as well, is that a lot of student groups don’t understand that suggesting donations is by definition a fundraiser,” Roberts said.  

Chabad of Northern Colorado Rabbi  Yerachmiel Gorelik said that even though the ad said that donations are suggested, the event is totally free and nobody is pressured to donate.

“Nobody is required to pay,” Gorelik said. “Anybody and everybody is welcome to come for free.”

Collegian Reporter Allec Brust can be reached at news@collegian.com or via Twitter at @Brustyyy.

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  • M

    Menachem MevashirApr 4, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    CSU censored my comment so I uploaded it here: https://www.4shared.com/web/preview/pdf/nBj6RkEOei

    Reply
  • M

    MichaelApr 21, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Dear ASCSU and The Collegian,
    I was surprised and confused by this article in today’s Collegian:
    ASCSU votes to fund Chabad Passover event after reaching bylaw compromise
    Why should CSU fund private religious organizations? Does CSU fund Christian events? Moslem? Hindu?
    Of course Jewish students at CSU should have a right to follow their religion, but why does CSU need to pay for them to do so?
    If Jewish students want to have a Passover Seder, let them solicit the wealthy Fort Collins Jewish community for funding. Or let them pay for it themselves. For the price of four lattes at Starbucks, they can enjoy a very lavish Passover meal.
    Anyway, it would seem to violate separation of Church and State principles for a public institution like CSU to fund Jewish students’ events.
    Furthermore, ASCSU should know that CHABAD itself is a hate organization. Its seminal book, called Tanya, teaches that non-Jews are totally satanic creatures in whom there is no good at all. See this quote about them from a book by an Israeli professor:
    Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The Weight of Three Thousand Years (Pluto Middle Eastern Studies) by Israel Shahak and Gore Vidal
    http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/jewhis.htm
    http://www.biblebelievers.org.au/jewhis2.htm#Prejudice%20and%20Prevarication
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel_Shahak#Jewish_History.2C_Jewish_Religion:_The_Weight_Of_Three_Thousand_Years

    My final, more general example is, if possible, even more shocking than the others. It concerns the attitude of the Hassidic movement towards non-Jews. Hassidism – a continuation (and debasement!) of Jewish mysticism – is still a living movement, with hundreds of thousands of active adherents who are fanatically devoted to their ‘holy rabbis’, some of whom have acquired a very considerable political influence in Israel, among the leaders of most parties and even more so in the higher echelons of the army.
    What, then, are the views of this movement concerning non-Jews? As an example, let us take the famous Hatanya, fundamental book of the Chabad movement, one of the most important branches of Hassidism. According to this book, all non-Jews are totally satanic creatures ‘in whom there is absolutely nothing good’. Even a non-Jewish embryo is qualitatively different from a Jewish one. The very existence of a non-Jew is ‘non-essential’, whereas all of creation was created solely for the sake of the Jews.
    This book is circulated in countless editions, and its ideas are further propagated in the numerous ‘discourses’ of the present hereditary Fuhrer of Chabad, the so-called Lubavitcher rabbi, M.M. Schneurssohn, who leads this powerful world-wide organization from his New York headquarters. In Israel these ideas are widely disseminated among the public at large, in the schools and in the army. (According to the testimony of Shulamit Aloni, Member of the Knesset, this Chabad propaganda was particularly stepped up before Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in March 1978, in order to induce military doctors and nurses to withhold medical help from ‘Gentile wounded’. This Nazi-like advice did not refer specifically to Arabs or Palestinians, but simply to ‘Gentiles’, goyim.) A former Israeli President, Shazar, was an ardent adherent of Habbad, and many top Israeli and American politicians – headed by Prime Minister Begin – publicly courted and supported it. This, in spite of the considerable unpopularity of the Lubavitcher rabbi – in Israel he is widely criticized because he refuses to come to the Holy Land even for a visit and keeps himself in New York for obscure messianic reasons, while in New York his anti-Black attitude is notorious.
    The fact that, despite these pragmatic difficulties, Chabad can be publicly supported by so many top political figures owes much to the thoroughly disingenuous and misleading treatment by almost all scholars who have written about the Hassidic movement and its Habbad branch. This applies particularly to all who have written or are writing about it in English. They suppress the glaring evidence of the old Hassidic texts as well as the latter-day political implications that follow from them, which stare in the face of even a casual reader of the Israeli Hebrew press, in whose pages the Lubavitcher rabbi and other Hassidic leaders constantly publish the most rabid bloodthirsty statements and exhortations against all Arabs.


    This article by a former member of CHABAD exposes the deep antipathy of CHABAD and most Orthodox Jewish organizations against non-Jews: http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2012/02/lying-to-oprah-what-hasidim-really-think-about-non-jews-456.html
    I also urge you to see the following links as well. CHABAD advocates for the most intransigent Israeli positions against the Palestinians and even calls for their wholesale expulsion and brutalization by the Israeli military occupation:
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/04/07/why-is-the-us-honoring-a-racist-rabbi/
    http://ifamericansknew.org/
    contact@ifamericansknew.org, contact@councilforthenationalinterest.org
    http://www.dailystormer.com/jewish-hatred-of-the-goyim-results-in-collective-punishment-for-palestinians/
    http://crownheights.info/jewish-news/29404/rabbi-ovadia-yosef-gentiles-exist-only-to-serve-jews/
    http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2012/02/lying-to-oprah-what-hasidim-really-think-about-non-jews-456.html

    After studying this damning information, I am confident you will conclude that not only should ASCSU NOT fund any CHABAD sponsored events, but they should petition the CSU Administration to expel them from campus. CHABAD doesn’t deserve to have a presence on ANY American college or university campus.

    Shalom and Happy Passover to All,
    Menachem Mevashir
    Fort Collins
    970-689-8942 (cell) / mevashir@aol.com

    Reply