BDS Bill Debate Is about Anti-Semitism, Not Speech

(JNS) Jonathan S. Tobin - Given the abject failure of the campaign to boycott, divest and sanction Israel or to get American universities to endorse their efforts, there are those who consider that all the fuss made about the issue gives the BDS camp too much credit and far too much attention. Of course, it's legal to boycott anything you don't like. Even the most vicious anti-Semitic libels are legally protected when it comes to free speech, provided they aren't linked to violence. But organized commercial boycotts rooted in bias are illegal. BDS is a campaign of discrimination against the one Jewish state on the planet and therefore anti-Semitic by definition. BDS is a flop with respect to isolating Israel, but in spite of its lack of success, BDS has lent a measure of false legitimacy to those who would engage in anti-Semitic rhetoric. BDS is worth fighting because its real target isn't Israel, but American Jews and their right to stand up for their beliefs without fear of insult and intimidation. As we've seen on college campuses, wherever the BDS movement raises its banners, acts of anti-Semitism follow.

2019-01-09 00:00:00

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