Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

Official newspaper of The University of Texas at Austin

The Daily Texan

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October 4, 2022
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Gov. Abbott calls for universities to update free speech policies, discipline violators to address antisemitism on campuses

Texas+Governor+Greg+Abbott+watches+the+Longhorns+game+against+Alabama+from+the+sidelines+on+September+9%2C+2023+at+Bryant-Denny+Stadium.
Lorianne Willett
Texas Governor Greg Abbott watches the Longhorns’ game against Alabama from the sidelines on September 9, 2023 at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Gov. Greg Abbott called for public universities to review and update free speech policies, and punish potential violators of these policies, in an executive order on Wednesday.

Abbott called the rapid increase of antisemitism at public universities after Hamas’s Oct. 7 attack “particularly concerning” in the order. He noted graffiti on Jewish buildings and parking lots and the use of phrases like “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” at student organization-led protests as examples of antisemitism. 

Antisemitic incidents increased nationwide by 360% between Oct. 7 and Jan. 7, according to the Anti-Defamation League, an organization that aims to “stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all.” 


Abbott said universities should establish “appropriate punishments” for policy violations, including expulsion from institutions. He named UT’s Palestine Solidarity Committee and Students for Justice in Palestine, a national organization with chapters at multiple Texas universities, as potential violators in the order. 

Each public university system is required to report with documentation the actions they’ve taken to comply with the order to the Office of the Governor within the next 90 days, the executive order said. 

The University declined to comment.

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About the Contributor
Lorianne Willett, Photo Editor
Lorianne is a Journalism and Global Sustainability junior from San Antonio, Texas. Currently, she is the Photo Editor. In her free time, she enjoys reading and playing tennis.