Several states advance legislation to define anti-Semitism | WORLD
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Several states advance legislation to define anti-Semitism

Georgia Rep. Esther Panitch, D-Sandy Springs, right, fist bumps state Sen. Ben Watson, R-Savannah, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, after House Bill 30, an antisemitism bill, was passed unanimously by the Senate Judiciary Committee. Atlanta Journal-Constitution via The Associated Press/Photo by Jason Getz

Several states advance legislation to define anti-Semitism

Last week, both chambers of the Georgia legislature passed a bill that adopts the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of anti-Semitism. The bill now heads to Gov. Brian Kemp’s desk for signature. Kemp has already indicated that he will sign the bill. The definition is already widely used by several entities, including the U.S. State Department. Both Indiana and South Dakota are in the process of considering anti-discrimination bills that use the same definition. Critics of the Georgia bill, including Jewish Voice for Peace, say the definition falsely labels legitimate criticisms of the state of Israel as anti-Semitism and could be used to suppress free speech that supports the Palestinian people. Other states that have passed similar legislation in recent years include Iowa and Virginia.

What is the definition? The Holocaust Remembrance Alliance defines anti-Semitism as “a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

Dig deeper: Read Sharon Dierberger’s report in WORLD Magazine about policing student speech about the conflict in Gaza.

Johanna Huebscher

Johanna Huebscher is a student at Bob Jones University and a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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