Beware of the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act
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2024-05-20 16:57:09 UTC
By Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

The House of Representatives passed the “Anti-Semitism Awareness Act”
on May 2, by a vote of 320-91 in reaction to demonstrations on
numerous university campuses and elsewhere against the brutal and
genocidal policy of Israel in Gaza. The Act has now been sent to the
Senate, where it seems certain to pass. This is an extremely dangerous
bill that could criminalize the Bible, many Christian Churches, as
well as any negative remarks about Israel and Jews. In brief, it
threatens us with totalitarian thought control. We must do everything
we can to oppose it.

First, let’s take an overview of the Act. It adopts the very broad
definition of anti-Semitism of the “International Holocaust
Remembrance Association.” The Act calls this definition “a vital tool
which helps individuals understand and identify the various
manifestations of antisemitism.”

What does this definition say? “Antisemitism is a certain perception
of Jews, which may be expressed in hatred of Jews. Rhetorical and
physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or
non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community
institutions and religious facilities.” How you can be anti-Semitic
toward someone who isn’t Jewish isn’t immediately apparent.

The authors of the definition give someone examples of what they
consider anti-Semitic. These include saying that the Jews control the
media and Congress, saying that Israel is a racist state, propagating
the “blood libel” that the Jews killed Jesus, minimizing or denying
the Holocaust, and claiming that Jews in America have “dual loyalty.”

As a number of writers including Tucker Carlson and John Zmirak have
pointed out, the definition allows large parts of the Bible to be
banned. The most famous such passage is Matthew 27: 25. “His blood be
upon us and our children.” This is the “blood libel” that the Act
wouldn’t let us teach!

You might object that the Act would never be enforced in this way. The
American people would never stand for it! But it would always be
there, like a sword of Damocles, hanging over our heads. And don’t be
so sure it wouldn’t be enforced! The Scottish Hate Speech Act was
passed in 2021, and people predicted it would never be enforced.
Beginning in April 2024, though, it has been enforced, and many people
have been fined and imprisoned for violating it.

The biggest problem with the Act, though, isn’t the definition of
anti-Semitism. If it were, we could substitute a more reasonable
definition, such as “hatred for all Jews.” Even if this were done,
however, we would still be in an untenable position. Banning any kind
of speech, whether it is good or bad, is incompatible with a free
society. As the great Murray Rothbard has taught us, all rights are
property rights. Everyone can set the rules for speech on his own
property, and no one has the right to control what anyone says on
someone else’s property. This includes speech which counts as
“offensive.” Of course, we don’t live in a libertarian society, but we
should come as close as we can in practice to it. This means following
the strictest possible interpretation of the First Amendment.
“Congress shall make no law. . .abridging the freedom of speech, or
of the press.”. ‘No law” means “no law” and that includes laws against
so-called “hate speech.” As the great legal scholar Dr. Wanjiru Njoya
says, “Jews must learn to live in a world where people say offensive
things about them, same as anyone else. You shouldn’t jail people for
saying offensive things about Jews or Israel.”

We need to ask ourselves, why the Act has been passed at the present
time. The answer is obvious. It is to block all criticism of Israel.
And Israel should be criticized, because of the genocidal policy it is
following in Gaza. The US government, led by brain-dead Biden and his
gang of neocon controllers, have supported Israel with money and
advanced weapons throughout Israel’s invasion. Anthony Blinken, “our”
Secretary of State, flew to Tel Aviv as soon as the invasion started
and, standing beside war criminal “Bibi” Netanyahu, said, “I come
before you not only as the United States secretary of state but also
as a Jew.” See here.

Is it “anti-Semitic” to report this? One of the examples the
International Holocaust Remembrance Day Association’s definition of
anti-Semitism is to say that Jews have a strong influence on American
foreign policy. But it’s the simple truth.

And what policy do Blinken and his cohorts support? It is Israel’s
policy to exterminate the Palestinians who live in Gaza. The great Ron
Unz has called it “the greatest televised massacre of civilians in the
history of the world.” Under the Act, Unz could be prosecuted for
saying that, because saying that Israelis are committing genocide, or
comparing then to Nazis, is forbidden.

As if that were not bad enough, conditions in Gaza are getting worse.
Because of Israel’s constant bombing and interdiction of food
shipments to Gaza, a famine is occurring there. According to Cindy
McCain, the Director of the World Food Program, “There is famine,
full-blown famine, in the north, and it’s moving its way south.” Now
it will reach the south, because Israel has just blocked food
shipments to Rafah.

Should calling attention to horrendous news like this be an offense
punishable by jail? You don’t have to be a libertarian to recognize
that we can’t have a free society under the censorship conditions this
Act would impose.

Many Jews would have to be banned by this standard. The eminent Jewish
historian Omer Bartov said last November that “functionally and
rhetorically we may be watching an ethnic cleansing operation that
could quickly devolve into genocide.” His worst fears have come to
pass since then. He too would be banned under the Act. So would Norman
Finkelstein and John Mearsheimer.

Jews who don’t criticize Israeli’s war could also be banned under the
Act. For example, some very religious Jews are anti-Zionist and don’t
recognize Israel as a legitimate state. They could be charged with
anti-Semitism. Also, what about Orthodox Jews who don’t recognize
conversions to Judaism supervised by Reform rabbis? If they say that
such converts aren’t Jewish, they could be charged under the Act as
anti-Semitic. So could Reform rabbis who mock the Orthodox as
benighted reactionaries.

One of the oddest aspects of this whole deplorable business is that
the Act bans statements that the Jews have a lot of political power.
One wonders how the Act passed by the astonishing margin of 320 to 91
without pressure from the Israeli Lobby. The sellout Speaker of the
House Mike Johnson is bought and paid for. How then can the Act ban a
statement that is obviously true and that the passage of the Act shows
to be true?

One target of the Act is the heroic university students who are
protesting what is going on in Gaza. The sponsors of the Act depict
them as lawbreakers who need to be suppressed to preserve “law and
order”, but students protests against criminal wars are part of the
American tradition. Student protests against LBJ’s criminal war
against Vietnam helped bring down his presidency. Libertarians and all
other lovers of freedom should never forget that we are anti-war.

Of course the neocons behind the Act don’t see matters this way. These
days, students often learn about news through social media platforms
like TikTok. Many students learned about what was going on in Gaza
though discussions on that platform, and because of this, the neocons
in Congress voted to force TikTok’s parent company to sell it within
270 days; if not, it will be banned in America. As Dr. Ron Paul notes,
“ The head of the Anti-Defamation League was actually caught on tape
complaining about the “TikTok problem.’”

When we talk about the neocons, we should never forget that they got
us into the disastrous invasion of Iraq under George W. Bush. The US
government killed a million people –half of them children thanks to
the US starvation blockade — and cost us trillions of dollars. Despite
this—or maybe because of it—neocons like Robert Kagan still praise the
Iraq war today. This is the sort of person behind the Act.

In my opinion, the evidence for Israeli genocide is overwhelming, and
those who want to ban people from saying so are calling for a ban on
the truth. But suppose you disagree. You should still oppose the Act.
As John Stuart Mill said in his great On Liberty (1859): “But the
peculiar evil of silencing an opinion is, that it is robbing the human
race;. . .those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those
who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the
opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, what is almost as
great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of
truth, produced by its collision with error.”

The great Albert Jay Nock said about censorship that “this degrading
enervation of a whole people is rather a heavy offset to the benefits
gained by a policy of expediency.”

You shouldn’t be surprised that neocons like Kagan smear this great
libertarian and anti-war crusader as an anti-Semite.

We should take the opportunity provided by the Act to engage in a full
and frank discussion of American foreign policy. Why are we supplying
billions of dollars in aid to a country engaging in genocide? Why are
we supporting Ukraine in a war against Russia that could lead to a
thermonuclear war? What groups benefit from these policies? By the
way, if you are looking for real anti-Semites, you should start with
the pro-Nazi Azov Brigade backing the tyrannical dictatorship of
Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Let’s do everything we can to get rid of the Anti-Semitism Awareness
Act and to return to our traditional foreign policy of
non-intervention, following the guidance of Dr. Ron Paul and Murray

2024-05-20 17:07:02 UTC
Post by NefeshBarYochai
Let’s do everything we can to get rid of the Anti-Semitism Awareness
Act and to return to our traditional foreign policy of
non-intervention, following the guidance of Dr. Ron Paul and Murray
Ron Paul? Why would anyone want to follow that goofball?
2024-05-20 18:36:27 UTC
Post by Tyrone
Post by NefeshBarYochai
Let’s do everything we can to get rid of the Anti-Semitism Awareness
Act and to return to our traditional foreign policy of
non-intervention, following the guidance of Dr. Ron Paul and Murray
Ron Paul? Why would anyone want to follow that goofball?
Self-declared "libertarian" politicians in the US tend to be
right-twice-a-day broken clocks; they basically exist to occasionally
remind you that the only thing worse than partisanship here, is

In the sense of "Wow think of the absolutely stupid amount of money and
influence that must be at risk to get the major parties to agree on
something, someone must be threatening to out 80% of everyone in
Congress as having gay lovers to get this done."

Which to be fair is a set Rand Paul likely finally isn't a member of
because imagine him being seriously interested in banging anyone but
himself, the concept of him loving anyone is absurd on its face.

Anyway, the self-declared libertarian lt. governor of Texas figures that
you'd only need to imprison 50 million Americans to reduce crime to
negligible levels:

I guess that's in comparison to the 200 million some kind of
just-regular conservative freedom-lover would want to lock up so we
should be grateful for small mercies.