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StandWithUs Letter to Tufts Dental School About Apparent Antisemitism from Student

Updated: Sep 27


September 24, 2020

VIA EMAIL: (Anthony.Monaco@tufts.edu; Nadeem.Karimbux@tufts.edu)

Dr. Anthony P. Monaco, M.D., Ph.D.

President

Tufts University

Office of the President

Ballou Hall, 2nd Floor

Medford, Massachusetts 02155

Dr. Nadeem Karimbux, DMD, MMSc

Dean

Tufts University School of Dental Medicine

1 Kneeland Street

Boston, Massachusetts 02111

Re: Investigation into Tufts Dental Student Adam Elayan

Dear President Monaco and Dean Karimbux,

We write on behalf of the StandWithUs Saidoff Legal Department and the StandWithUs Center for Combating Antisemitism, two divisions of StandWithUs, an international, non-profit Israel education organization, concerning Adam Elayan, a third-year student at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine. Mr. Elayan has allegedly[1] posted alarming and violent discriminatory and antisemitic statements on his public Twitter account for years, a sampling of which is available below as “Exhibit A.” His purported comments specifically target Jews, Israelis, and Zionists; call for violence against Jews; express hatred toward Jews and Zionists; and convey antisemitic conspiracy theories. While any alleged expression of such hatred should raise immediate concern, collectively these apparent sentiments are egregious for a student aspiring to provide dental health services to the public, and to Jewish or Israeli patients in particular.

Mr. Elayan’s online posts present an apparent obsession with conveying hatred for Jews, relaying antisemitic tropes about Jews, and posturing about a desire to harm Jews physically. As evidenced in screenshots below, these public discriminatory and antisemitic comments apparently date as far back as 2012. In one violent tweet,[2] Mr. Elayan reportedly states, “LEMME F**K THIS YAHOOD [Jewish] B**CHES UP YO.” In another violent tweet, Mr. Elayan threatens, “I will f**kin cremate you Jewish b**ch.” Mr. Elayan reportedly blames all problems on Jews: “Everything bad that happens I blame it on the yahood [Jews] lmao,traffic damn yahood [Jews],failed my test piece of sh*t yahood [Jews],its raining f**kin yahood [Jews].” He appears to post general Jew hatred, such as, “Can't stand the yahood [Jews] here” and “You stupid yahood [Jew] you're like a h.s. teacher get out of my face,” as well as maniacal fantasies of hurting Jews, such as, “Tb to my plan of running around Jerusalem with scissors to cut the Jews’ sideburn curls off ... Their hair bothers me so much.”

In addition to clear hatred of Jewish people, Mr. Elayan apparently emphasizes his hatred of Zionism—which is a core part of Jewish identity. His continuous assertions on this point allegedly include, “Every certain trait I hate about people stems from the average personality of Zionists”; “I do not refer to Zionists as human beings. They are of primitive standards, comparable to the Neanderthal”; and, “They steal your whole country, that’s a Zionist.” Such statements demonstrate an obsessive and continual spewing of hatred, bias, and discrimination against Jews, Israelis, and Zionists, spanning years.

Likewise, Mr. Elayan’s antisemitic conspiracy theories abound on matters both general and political. Examples include conspiracy theory tweets such as, “YAHOOD [Jews] RIGGED THE GAME”; “I've been on level 77 on candy crush for weeks, it was definitely made by yahood [Jews] ... Those bastards”; “Israel gets tons of money, weapons, and news coverage because who runs all the major businesses? The yahood [Jews]”; and, “The person who created the SATs was definitely yahoodi [Jews].”

We are alarmed by Mr. Elayan’s apparently longstanding and unabashed vitriol toward Jews— an identifiable category of patients whom he undoubtedly will encounter during his practice of dentistry. If he graduates from dental school, Mr. Elayan will be able to make significant healthcare decisions for a population he appears to detest and desires to harm. The vile, discriminatory, and antisemitic tweets attributed to Mr. Elayan make it nearly impossible to believe that such an individual could serve as a competent dental professional. Mr. Elayan’s allegedly repeated behavior highlights an obvious fixation with and contempt for Jews. It also raises serious doubts about whether he possesses the competence and compassion necessary to practice dentistry.

In order to safeguard future Jewish and Israeli patients from what appears to be a very real threat exhibited in posts attributed to Mr. Elayan, we encourage your administration to immediately investigate whether Mr. Elayan may have violated, at a minimum, the following applicable rules and provisions and, if he has, to institute immediate repercussions.

Potential Violations of the American Dental Association Principles of Ethics and Code of Professional Conduct

The American Dental Association (ADA) is built on a series of ethical standards of conduct (ADA Code) designed to protect the patient. Pursuant to the ADA Code’s preamble, the ethical standards set forth by the ADA Code should be “adopted and practiced throughout the dental educational process and subsequent professional career.” As such, the ADA has adopted five principles essential for dentists’ behavior currently applicable to Mr. Elayan as a dental student. Based on his alleged public comments, Mr. Elayan appears already to have violated—or is poised to violate—at least four of these principles:

· Section 2 Principle: Nonmaleficence. The dentist has a duty to refrain from harming the patient.

· Section 3 Principle: Beneficence. The dentist has a duty to promote the patient’s welfare.

· Section 4 Principle: Justice. The dentist has a duty to treat people fairly.

· Section 5 Principle: Veracity. The dentist has a duty to communicate truthfully.

Mr. Elayan’s purported hateful and violent statements against Jews, Zionists, and Israelis indicate a pattern of behavior unsuitable for a dentist; demonstrate a blatant inability to provide the competency, respect, veracity, and access required to practice dentistry; fly in the face of applicable ethical provisions requiring dental professionals to conform to minimal standards of care; and thus appear to run afoul of the foregoing ADA ethical principles.

Potential Violations of Tufts University School of Dental Medicine Values

Tufts University School of Dental Medicine lists four values that are part of the school’s vision as global leaders in oral health and that advance the school’s mission of providing an education committed to clinical excellence. Based on his alleged public comments, Mr. Elayan may have violated some, if not all, of these values:

  • Professional excellence and integrity in living, learning, and practicing with the highest ethical and clinical standards.

  • Commitment to advance dentistry through the integration of education, research, and collaboration.

  • Respect for each other’s rights, opinions, and beliefs in a diverse, culturally sensitive, and supportive environment.

  • A culture of open communication that fosters a sense of community.

The repeated discriminatory statements against Jews and Israelis attributed to Mr. Elayan would appear to establish disregard for the excellency and integrity necessary to practice dentistry as it relates to all patients. The biases apparent in these posts indicate a blatant disregard and lack of respect for the rights of all people, which is inconsistent with the high ethical and clinical standards set forth by your school. If he continues at your institution, we believe he could tarnish its reputation and those affiliated with it. As a result, we believe there is sufficient evidence for your administration to investigate immediately Mr. Elayan’s alleged conduct and, if the above is found to be true, consider whether Mr. Elayan’s expulsion is warranted for the sake of public welfare.

Conclusion

Mr. Elayan purportedly has a long and well-documented history of publicly expressing violence and hatred toward Jews, Zionists, and Israelis, as evidenced below in Exhibit A and outlined above. Such animus poses serious ethical violations, puts the lives of future patients in jeopardy, and has no place in the dental profession. We urge your administration to conduct a full and immediate investigation into Mr. Elayan and to take any available steps necessary—including expulsion if warranted—to prevent Mr. Elayan from harming anyone through his practice of dentistry.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter. We look forward to hearing back from you by October 10, 2020.

Sincerely,

Roz Rothstin

CEO & Co-Founder

StandWithUs


Yael Lerman

Director

StandWithUs Saidoff Legal Department


Carly Gammill

Director

StandWithUs Center for Combating Antisemitism


[1] The original tweets appear to have been deleted so it is not possible to provide direct links to them. However they were all captured before Mr. Elayan allegedly deleted them and information regarding Mr. Elayan’s tweets is therefore publicly available at https://canarymission.org/individual/Adam_Elayan. [2] All alleged tweets quoted in this letter are included below as Exhibit A and are publicly available at https://canarymission.org/individual/Adam_Elayan.

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