(WASHINGTON, D.C, 6/8/2016) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy group, today called on American Muslims and other people of conscience to contact their elected representatives in Congress to urge them to oppose the “Combating BDS Act of 2016,” which would violate the constitutionally-guaranteed free speech rights of businesses and institutions that participate in the international boycott of Israel’s illegal occupation of the West Bank.
Sponsored earlier this year by Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Reps. Robert Dold (R-IL) and Juan Vargas (D-CA), the bill authorizes “State and local governments to divest from entities that engage in commerce-related or investment-related boycott, divestment, or sanctions activities targeting Israel.”
CAIR also launched an online action alert urging American’s who value the First Amendment-protected right of boycotting to contact their members of Congress to oppose S.2531 and H.R.4514.
SEE: ACTION ALERT
This bill is designed to counter and undermine boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) efforts that protest unlawful Israeli settlements in Palestinian land. Implementation of the bill would encourage states to alienate a growing number of businesses, university student governments and investors who have called to boycott or take other economic measures against companies and institutions complicit in Israel’s human rights abuses.
Boycotts such as the Montgomery Bus boycott against segregation or the boycott of companies enabling South African Apartheid have been employed successfully in support of civil and human rights and as an integral part of our political process.
CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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