More on the Penn State Censorship Scandal:

[Welcome Instapundit readers! If you have not been following this story and want some further background information, you can read my previous posts on the subject here. Ironically, Professor Garoian, responsible for censorship in this incident, previously wrote a series of articles condemning censorship of the arts, including at Penn State!]

A very strong statement by the director of the Penn State Hillel, Tuvia Abramson:

Following eight days of misinformation by the School of Visual Arts and the Penn State University spokesman, which resulted in misleading information, I have decided today to issue an official statement as the executive director of Penn State Hillel.

The university is an open market for ideas, creativity, and sometimes debates. Penn State Hillel is a place where Jewish students create, learn debate, grow, and above all feel comfortable to be a Jew. The role of the Hillel Foundation on campus is to educate the community about Judaism, to maintain a high profile so in a case like Joshua Stulman's they will know that there is an organization that supports the students.

The Hillel Foundation, as stated in its charter, must represent the diversity of opinion (religious, cultural, and political) which are found in any Jewish community around the world. Hillel has no political agenda, and as I write this letter today, I have not even seen all of the pictures for Joshua's exhibit.

In my 23 years in Hillel on three different campuses, I have not seen an act so blatant as the act of censorship, discrimination, and anti-Semitism like the one which applies to Joshua Stulman [editor's note: the charge of anti-Semitism seems a bit extreme here, but apparently the Hillel director has been subjected to a flurry of anti-Semitic calls and threats, so you can understand his senstivity to the blame that was put on Hillel].

This was not a single act. This was systematic abuse and intimidation which was applied by the School of Visual Arts to coerce the student and force him to cancel his art exhibition all because of its political content.

The message of Joshua's exhibit was this: When you preach hate, teach hate, and indoctrinate children with hate, you will have terror. When you use the airways and the political system to reinforce hate, you create a mechanism by which these children will learn how and when to destroy innocent life.

This message was blocked by the director of the School of Visual Arts and its faculty without discussion or review of most of the artwork with the student Joshua Stulman. The director issued a statement canceling the exhibit stating the cancellation was based on Penn State's Policy AD42 about Zero Tolerance for Hate and that Joshua's work did not promote a democratic dialogue or cultural diversity.

The second reason stated for canceling the exhibit was due to the sponsorship of Hillel for the reception on opening night.

Both of these statements were false, misleading, and were never discussed prior to receiving the letter of cancellation. They were fake excuses to find justification to shut up the exhibit because of its political content, which did not go along with the political opinion or agenda of Professor Charles Garoian and art lecturer and advisor Robert Yarber.

The mistake was done by the School of Visual Arts, who added insult to injury when Professor Garoian offered to Joshua on Friday night, the Jewish Sabbath, that he could put up his exhibit the next day if Joshua would drop the Hillel sponsorship. Joshua refused to accept the offer of removing Hillel because doing so would validate their denial of applying censorship to the artwork.

All the attempts to set the record straight and to have the School of Visual Arts issue an apology to Hillel for falsely implicating the Foundation. In February, Hillel sponsored an exhibit by the same artist in the same gallery with no issues.

An [RTF] attachment to this e-mail details six weeks worth of correspondence related to this incident.

The Hillel Foundation is thankful to [Penn State President] Graham Spanier who issued a statement against censorship. The Foundation also thanks Stephen MacCarthy for understanding the complexity and his tireless work to resolve this unacceptable situation.

On April 27 Johsua received an email from Professor Garoian, which was to represent an apology, but rather it was just a letter full of excuses.

Nowhere in his e-mail was an apology to Hillel for falsely using its name as an excuse to cancel the exhibit, nor was there a specific apology to Joshua in regard to using the Hate Code as a false excuse to cancel the exhibit.

As of today no public apology to anyone has been issued to the media. Additionally the statement from the university spokesman has not been modified. On the contrary, on April 29 Fox News broadcasted the university spokesman William Mahon as saying that it was only the responsibility of one professor.

The Hillel Foundation feels that the School of Visual Arts needs to come clean. It has given a black eye to the college of Arts and Architecture. It has given a black eye to the entire university, it mislead the media, faculty, staff, and above all it projected the university as an academic center where freedom of expression, academic freedom and freedom of speech is denied because of political correctness.

Is this the image that Penn State would like to promote? I doubt it. The mistake was done by the School of Visual Arts. The university needs to find a way to right the wrong. An investigation is necessary of the faculty of the School of Visual Arts, administration, and anyone else at this university who may have been involved in this act of cancellation and the climate of discrimination.

Attached with this email is a more detailed chronology of events, which I have reprinted "beneath the fold" for those who are interested.