As Hamas carried out unspeakable horror against Israeli civilians, out came a litany of student groups on campuses across the country proclaiming the terrorists as freedom fighters. Thirty-one Harvard student groups posted a now-infamous statement blaming Israel for the violence committed by Hamas. And that was only the beginning of the on-campus reaction.  

Pro-Palestinian students at the University of Wisconsin rallied, chanting, “Glory to our martyrs.” At a pro-Palestine event at the University of North Carolina, WRAL News reports “an Israeli professor was pushed down the stairs.”  

Posters appeared on Georgetown University’s campus advertising a vigil for the terrorists; the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) group at George Washington University held a similar event for the “martyrs” down the street.  

UC Berkeley Bears for Palestine released a statement that reads like it was ghostwritten by Hamas; it read, in part: “Glory to Palestine, glory to the resistance, and glory to our martyrs.” These are only samples of what happened in higher education over the past two weeks.  

This callous behavior is shocking but instructive. This celebration of violence and terrorism, propelled by a tidal wave of hate, lays bare the moral bankruptcy of America’s higher-education system to cultivate the next generation of leaders. 

Hamas teaches Palestinian children that rape and murder are justified. How damning it is that many American students believe the same thing.  

College students are supposedly America’s brightest young people. Any high school graduate should already have a solid grasp of history, government and Western civilization before setting foot on a college campus. He should also have the critical thinking ability to recognize the murder of innocents and the moral foundation to be outraged by it.  

These protests are shameful. The solution to problems created by free speech is not to crack down, it is to step up. Every single college leader has a moral obligation to ensure that these students’ pro-Hamas, anti-Semitic beliefs do not go unchallenged.  

This moment demands a swift and unwavering response from university leaders and faculty who are obligated to stand up for their Jewish students and peers and Jewish people around the world. University of Florida President and former senator Ben Sasse led the way with an unequivocal statement in support of Jews against Hamas. If other university presidents want to live up to their titles, they should follow suit.  

The pipeline from “elite” universities — if they can still be called that — to political leadership is a strong one. Unless something changes, our country runs the risk of being led by people who might be content with the abandonment and destruction of Israel.  

For decades, our tax dollars have financed a higher-ed system that simmers in a toxic stew of illiberalism and hateful anti-Semitism. It should thus come as no surprise that so many students see the rape and murder of Jews as justifiable.  

One need not look far to find out where these pro-Hamas students get their bad ideas. Last week, an instructor at Stanford was suspended for directing Jewish students to stand in a corner and teaching that Israel was worse than Nazi Germany. An associate professor at Yale posted a tweet seemingly trying to justify the massacre of Israeli civilians. A Cornell professor called the terrorist attacks “exhilarating.” 

Hamas teaches Palestinian children that rape and murder are justified. How damning it is that many American students believe the same thing.  

The very people who pride themselves on their tolerance and compassion are supporting Hamas, a terrorist organization that has been engaged in the murder of innocent people for years. The people who are so quick to call for “safe spaces” have done painfully little to support Jewish students.  

These institutions employ dozens of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion officers whose jobs — at least on paper — are to ensure the rights and the voices of racial and ethnic minorities are respected. Yet when mobs are calling for the death and destruction of Jews, they do nothing.   

There are thoughtful and intelligent individuals on these campuses who do not share the beliefs of their anti-Semitic classmates and professors, but the fact that there are so many who quite comfortably rally in support of Hamas is cause for deep concern. One can only imagine the fear and sadness that Jewish students and faculty feel having to live and attempt to learn while surrounded by such hate.  

Shame on these pro-Hamas students and faculty for denying the horrors in front of their eyes. And shame on us if we pretend their hateful ignorance is a random occurrence rather than the predictable and terrifying outcome of illiberal progressivism in higher education.