The student body president at the University of California, Los Angeles, has reported that she has been on the receiving end of anti-semitic vandalism.
UCLA student body president Arielle Mokhtarzadeh announced in a Facebook post that she was subjected to an act of anti-semitic vandalism. According to the post, someone intentionally destroyed her Mezuzah, a Jewish ornament that is placed outside of a doorway. Mokhtarzadeh had placed the Mezuzah outside of the door to her campus office.
“The Mezuzah is a Jewish ornament containing a small, handcrafted scroll with one of Judaism’s most central prayers,” Mokhtarzadeh wrote in the post. She attached a photo to the post, showing that the vandals left only the adhesive that secured the Mezuzah to the doorway.
Mokhtarzadeh explained that, as a result of discrimination, her grandparents were forced to place their Mezuzahs insider their doorposts when they lived in Iran. She also claimed that the previous USAC president, Danny Siegel, was subject to the same act of vandalism during his tenure.
I grew up hearing stories about my grandparents’ childhoods in Iran where they were forced to put their Mezuzahs on the inside of their doorposts, rather of than the outside. What better way to honor the sacrifices and experiences of my grandparents and parents than to proudly express my Jewish identity in a way they never could. Imagine my utter disappointment to see that the reality they feared most had happened in our very own Kerckhoff Hall. Not to mention that this is the second time in two years that Mezuzah has been stolen from doorpost the Office of the President. The same incident took place last year under the tenure of 2016-2017 USAC President Danny Siegel.
Before she closed her message, Mokhtarzadeh offered a message to the individual that vandalized her door. “To those who sought to tell me that my identity was not welcomed: The fact that you felt the need to vandalize my office under the cover of darkness shows that you and your actions do not represent this community, which has no tolerance for your intolerance.”