Outlaw BDS supports the passage of New York State Senate Bill s2492 with the goal of:
The bill prevents any state agency of government body in the State of New York from financing any individual, organization, or company advocating the boycott or divestment of American allies and their citizens.
Bill s2492 has passed the New York State Senate and is moving to the New York State Assembly. Once through that chamber, it will pass to the desk of Governor Cuomo to be signed into law. The bill builds on legislation in other states like New Jersey, Illinois and South Carolina.
The term BDS – the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement – was popularized by a movement to isolate the State of Israel. It claims to act on political grounds, but applies clear double standards with racist undertones toward citizens from other countries. BDS aims to isolate actual people including justifying discrimination against culture, religious and history of people from boycotted countries. As the bill’s sponsor memo sent to other senators says, OutlawBDS is committed to outing activists in that movement that advance discriminatory “anti-Semitic” and “anti-capitalist principles.”
As the bill states, “’Boycott’ shall mean to engage in any activity, or to promote or encourage others to engage in any activity, that will result in any person abstaining from commercial, social or political relations, with any allied nation, or companies based in an allied nation or in territories controlled by an allied nation, with the intent to penalize, inflict, or cause harm to, or otherwise promote or cast disrepute upon, such allied nation, its people or its commercial products.”
Who introduced s2492 to the NY State Senate?
Senator Elaine Phillips (R) of NY’s 7th senate district introduced s2492 on January 13, 2017. The bill has bipartisan support from four co-sponsors: Simcha Felder (D), Todd Kaminsky (D), Terrence Murphy (R) and Michael H Ranzenhofer (R).
What is the bill’s status?
The New York State Senate passed s2492 on March 8, 2017 by a 55-5 margin. It was then delivered to the New York State Assembly for debate.
What purpose does a list serve?
Outlaw BDS has compiled a directory of BDS-supporting individuals, organizations, or companies who would be ineligible for New York state financing under the terms of s2492. The bill also explicitly prohibits investment by certain state public funds – namely social security and retirement funds – into any individuals, organizations, and companies that sponsor BDS.
How will this bill affect political debate on campus?
The bill punishes discriminatory boycott initiatives increasingly common on New York’s college campuses and campuses across the United States. The debates before student councils use politics to generate a hostile atmosphere against students based on their background. This has happened to in California, resulting in litmus tests for Jewish students at UCLA because of their political views and religious heritage.
This bill will block discriminatory practices against Jewish students and put a dent into the hostile, hateful atmosphere BDS creates on New York’s campuses.
Myth: The bill will imprison anyone who supports BDS.
No. The bill limits the way state agencies and government can work with individuals or organizations that support BDS. No matter how deplorable as BDS statements are, the bill does not regulate speech, but state financial and logistical support for any advocates of BDS.
As the NY Senate’s website states, “This bill would prohibit state contracting with, and state investment in, persons and businesses that promote or engage in activities to boycott American allied nations.”
Sponsored by: Elaine Phillips, 7th Senate district
Passed Senate, awaiting assembly
This bill would prohibit state contracting with, and state investment in, persons and businesses that promote or engage in activities to boycott American allied nations. The bill has found support in the Senate and follows the example of other anti-BDS bills passed across the United States.
“New York State has no business funding attacks against Israel or supporting hate; it’s an inappropriate and offensive use of taxpayer dollars. Entities facilitating an economic war against Israel and student groups that are harassing, intimidating and abusing Jewish students should not receive one penny of state support”
“A new front has opened in the fight against Israel’s existence. Just as the U.S.-Israel relationship has developed a robust and burgeoning commercial dimension, the threats against Israel have acquired one… New York will not tolerate this new brand of warfare. New York stands with Israel because we are Israel and Israel is us. Our values — freedom, democracy, liberty and the pursuit of peace — are collective, as is our drive to achieve them.
“Know that the United States has Israel’s back, and know that you now have a fighter and a friend in the UN to help you… It makes absolutely no sense and it has no connection to any reasonable definition of justice.”
“I am writing to express my alarm over the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, or ‘BDS,’ a global effort to isolate the State of Israel by ending commercial and academic exchanges…
I am seeking your advice on how we can work together across party lines and with a diverse array of voices to reverse this trend with information and advocacy and fight back against further attempts to isolate and delegitimize Israel.“