You dedicated your life to the study of physics and cosmology, and you pushed forward human understanding of our universe. I thank you for contribution.
But after today, your legacy will be forever altered, denoted by your stance against Israel. It's a shame because you spent 50 years pushing forward science, and you spent 1 day destroying your memory forever.
You made the decision to boycott the "Facing Tomorrow" conference in Israel. You made clear that your decision was based on your opinions against Israel's policies.
Mr. Hawking, I implore you to learn about Leon Klinghoffer. Like you, Klinghoffer was also living his life from a wheelchair. In all sincerity and sensitivity, both you and Mr. Klinghoffer are in a less physically defensive position against would-be attackers. When four Palestinian terrorists hijacked the Achille Lauro in 1985, they targeted him for being a Jew. They murdered him in cold blood, shooting him in the head, as he sat in his wheelchair. Then they ejected his body and his wheelchair overboard into the ocean. This is the side you have chosen today.
Ask yourself: Of the people who whispered most loudly in your ear, loud enough for you to take such a stark, lopsided political stance against Israel, how many of them rejoice each time a bomb goes off in a crowded civilian destination like the Boston Marathon? How many of your cohorts cheered at 9/11? Do your friends smile each time an Israeli child is murdered or an Israeli bus is blown up? Were they secretly excited when Palestinians murdered Israeli Olympians in Munich or each time a synagogue is bombed in Europe? These aren't rhetorical questions.
But at this point, it doesn't matter, Mr. Hawking. The world now knows who you are.