Student organizations competed for $1,000 to be donated toward the charity of their choice in a game-show style competition called Battle of the Bulls, sponsored by the Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP).
Seven teams of three kept buzzers ready in front of an audience of about 60 in the Marshall Student Center Oval Theater on Monday.
Participating organizations included Sigma Phi Epsilon, Delta Gamma, alpha Kappa Delta Phi, Global Medical Brigades, Pi Delta Psi, Phi Sigma Pi and Students for a Democratic Society.
The students played a “Jeopardy!”-style game in which trivia questions about Palestinian culture, geography and history were asked of participants.
The majority of the questions referenced the Israel-Palestinian conflict and focused on the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land, “snatching” Palestinian children from their beds and “massacring” Palestinians on sacred Muslim ground.
“This is the primary motorway that links Jerusalem and the West Bank. Palestinians are forbidden to use it, and only Jews can use this road,” one question slide said.
“These are a type of poisons that Israeli settlers put in Palestinian water supplies to make them undrinkable,” another question slide said.
A few questions referenced perceived Israeli racism.
The contestants were asked what the Jewish derogatory term for “African” was. They were later asked to repeat the slur, when asked what Israelites called President Barack Obama.
Karim Hussein, a student majoring in chemistry who was sitting in the audience, said the racist allegations against Israel seemed out of place.
“It was a weird question,” he said.
The teams were also awarded points for answering questions about the relationship between Israel and the U.S.
Ahmad Saadaldin, the president of SJP and a senior majoring in public relations, said the group hopes to raise awareness of the Israeli occupation of Palestine.
He said the organization would like to see Israel leave Palestinian territory.
“We want to see an end to the occupation,” he said. “We’d like to see the West Bank free of the checkpoints, the separation walls.”
Saadaldin said he hoped the game-show style would be an entertaining method of informing both the students and the contestants.
“We figured Battle of the Bulls with a $1,000 cash prize to the charity of their choice would really encourage them,” he said. “They were motivated by the drive to support their own
Students for a Democratic Society, the winning student organization, originally planned to donate to the relief of the Philippines, a country recently devastated by Typhoon Haiyan, Gage Lacharite, a representative of Students for a Democratic Society, said. The group will be donating the $1,000 to a Palestinian refugee aid instead — a charity recommended by SJP.
“I just really hope it will help the Palestinian people it’s going to and that very soon the apartheid in Israel will fall,” Lacharite said.
Daniel Spencer, a representative of the Global Medical Brigades, said SJP prepared the contestants for the questions beforehand with a video and two articles that contained the answers to their questions.
“It’s over in the Middle East, so not many people have heard about it,” he said. “It’s the first time I’ve heard about it, honestly.”