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Trump executive order categorizing Judaism as a nationality sparks outrage among American Jews


The New York Times reports that President Donald Trump plans to sign an executive order on Wednesday, December 11 that, on the surface, is designed to target what he sees as anti-Semitism on college campuses. The order threatens to "withhold federal money from educational institutions that fail to combat discrimination," according to administration officials. 

But the order will "effectively interpret Judaism as a race or nationality, not just a religion," in order to prompt an existing federal law to take effect, a law that punishes colleges and universities "deemed to be shirking their responsibility to foster an open climate for minority students." While anti-Semitism is no doubt something that should be fought against, many critics of the order have argued that it is in and of itself totally anti-Semitic and that it targets Palestinian-Americans as well by stifling any anti-Israel free speech on campuses. 

First, broadly, to categorize Judaism as a nationality rather than a religion is to declare Jews from America not American.