Cornell Professor Apologizes After Saying Hamas Attack Left Him ‘Exhilarated’

A professor at Cornell University has apologized after saying he was ‘exhilarated’ after Hamas invaded Israel nearly two weeks ago.

Russell Rickford, an instructor at the ivy league school, appeared to celebrate the terrorism attacks during a rally in New York last weekend.

“Hamas has challenged the monopoly of violence,” Rickford said. “[Palestinians] were able to breathe for the first time in years. It was exhilarating. It was energizing. And if they weren’t exhilarated by this challenge to the monopoly of violence, by this shifting of the balance of power, then they would not be human. I was exhilarated.”

The comments immediately generated controversy, and thousands of students demanded Cornell administrators fire the professor.

Rickford later issued an apology, saying he was sorry for the pain he inflicted.

“I apologize for the horrible choice of words that I used in a portion of a speech that was intended to stress grassroots African American, Jewish and Palestinian traditions of resistance to oppression,” Rickford said. “I am sorry for the pain that my reckless remarks have caused my family, my students, my colleagues and many others in this time of suffering.”

From The Blaze:

The history professor acknowledged that "some of the language" he used "was reprehensible," and he claimed it "did not reflect my values."

It's not clear, then, why Rickford used such "reprehensible" language if it did not reflect his values. Communication is, after all, a means through which we transmit to others what we think and how we feel.