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Texas Jewish high school student kicked off robotics team for anti-Semitic joke

(JTA) — A Jewish student in Texas was kicked off his high school’s robotics team after he made an anti-Semitic joke at his own expense.

The student filed a federal lawsuit against Anderson High School in Austin, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

According to the lawsuit, the student found some coins on the floor of the robotics lab in November 2018. “Guess I’ll pick them up since I’m the Jew,” the student said. His comments were reported to the team coach.

The student was kicked off the team several months later after it qualified for the world championship competition, according to the lawsuit, which does not name the student.

The team coach also refused to give the student a letter of recommendation, but did write a letter to the national robotics organization “attempting to blackball (the student) from robotics competitions forever,” the newspaper reported.

The lawsuit contends that the student “was singled out for making a self-deprecating joke about Jewish culture, while other students using offensive language about race, or sexual orientation or disability are not.”