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The Daily TIP: South Carolina is First State to Pass Law Defining Anti-Semitism, Countering On Campus Hate

Posted by David Gerstman - April 13, 2018

South Carolina is First State to Pass Law Defining Anti-Semitism, Countering On Campus Hate
Palestinians Throw Firebombs, Burn Israeli Flags, as Hamas-Led Violent Riots Continue
Holocaust Remembrance Day is Time to Fight Back against Rising Tide of Anti-Semitism
Thousands Attend Eurovision Promotional Concert in Tel Aviv


South Carolina is First State to Pass Law Defining Anti-Semitism, Countering On Campus Hate

A law designed to fight on campus anti-Semitism passed as part of South Carolina's state budget late Thursday, The Post and Courier reported.

The law was inserted into the budget by Sen. Larry Grooms. Gov. Henry McMaster, who supported the law, is expected to sign the budget.

Last year, a bill defining anti-Semitism was introduced by Rep. Alan Clemmons and overwhelmingly passed the state's House of Representatives, but passage was blocked by a single senator who opposed the law.

In a statement hailing the passage of the law, the Louis D. Brandeis Center credited South Carolina with being the first state to pass a law "that will help tackle the rising anti-Semitism plaguing U.S. college campuses."

A 2014 study showed that 54% of college students witnessed anti-Semitism on campus. A study the following year indicated that the number of Jewish students on campus experiencing anti-Semitism had increased 75%. Meanwhile, the ADL reported that in 2017 anti-Semitic incidents had increased by 89% on college campuses in the United States.

“South Carolina was the first state to pass anti-BDS legislation and now has become the first state in the nation to pass uniform definition of anti-Semitism legislation,” said Josh Block, CEO and President of The Israel Project. “By passing this bill, South Carolina is correctly recognizing and addressing the unique threats Jews and Jewish students in particular face. Now illegal acts and breaches of university policy, that occur at state institutions of higher education, that exhibit anti-Semitic intent will be treated and punished as such. This represents a significant step in the protection of the civil rights of Jewish students.” 

Palestinians Throw Firebombs, Burn Israeli Flags, as Hamas-Led Violent Riots Continue

Hamas-led violent riots continued for a third consecutive week, as Palestinians at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel threw firebombs, attempted to breach the border fence, and burned Israeli flags, The New York Times reported Friday.

Gazans gathered at five points along the border with Israel. Israeli troops used live fire to keep rioters away from the border fence.

In the report, the Times described how Hamas uses human shields to protect terrorists, observing that while some rioters were "peaceful," others located just a few feet away "prepared gasoline bombs to hurl at the Israeli side."

A number of rioters ignored Israeli warnings and approached the border fence. Israeli soldiers responded to the attempted incursions with gunfire and tear gas.

As opposed to last week when Hamas told Gazans to gather thousands of tires to burn to obscure the vision of the Israeli soldiers, this week the riot's theme was themed "Flag Friday." During the week, printers throughout the enclave produced "thousands" of Israeli flags for burning. The symbolism casts doubt that the intention of the riots was to encourage coexistence with Israel.

A cleric, who gave a speech at one of the riots locations referenced a Koranic verse saying, “This day, Jews will be behind stones, and the stones will speak, saying, ‘Come Muslims, and kill this Jew who is behind me.’ " The message of the cleric, the Times observed, was "homicidal."



Holocaust Remembrance Day is Time to Fight Back against Rising Tide of Anti-Semitism

As we mark Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, we realize that this year is different than recent years. We have seen a drastic rise in anti-Semitism, nationalism, and xenophobia. Along with this, we are seeing a normalization of this behavior.

A study released on Holocaust Remembrance Day revealed that a majority of Americans (58 percent) believe that the Holocaust could happen again.

The Claims Conference study reveals a significant lack of knowledge about the Holocaust in the United States. Of those surveyed, 70 percent say fewer people seem to care about the Holocaust. Meanwhile, one-third of the respondents are misinformed about the magnitude of the genocide as 31 percent of all adults and 41 percent of millennials believe that two million Jews or less were killed.

With the lack of knowledge about the events that led to and during the Holocaust, we must inform future generations so that these atrocities never happen again.

Anti-Semitism is nothing new, but it is on the rise in the U.S. and around the world.

In 2017, according to the Anti-Defamation League, there were 1,986 anti-Semitic incidents reported in the U.S. -- a 60 percent rise from 2016. For the first time in a decade, there was an anti-Semitic incident reported in every state. Cases of anti-Semitism nearly doubled in K-12 schools and on college campuses.

Throughout the world, anti-Semitic acts are becoming more visible and more mainstream. In 2017, harassment, bomb threats, and vandalism targeting Jews reached near record highs.

To read the complete essay please click here.



Thousands Attend Eurovision Promotional Concert in Tel Aviv

The largest-ever Eurovision promo event took place earlier this week at Rabin Square in Tel Aviv, showcasing artists from 27 countries in a free outdoor concert for a crowd of thousands.

It’s the third consecutive year that the organization Israel Calling has taken Eurovision Song Contest contestants on a pre-show tour of Israel.

The 2018 group included journalists from various European countries and of course Israel’s own Netta Barzilai, who will perform “Toy” in the first half of Eurovision Semi-Final 1 on May 8 in Lisbon.

In all, songsters from 43 countries will compete.

“The Eurovision is not just a song contest; it’s a cultural phenomenon, promoting tolerance, open-mindedness, respect for one another and a love for humankind. The Eurovision holds a special place in the heart of many Israelis; the song contest is a night where we put our differences aside and share a feeling of pride,” said Ron Huldai, mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo.

During their travels around the Israel, contestants from countries including Belgium, Australia, Great Britain, Montenegro, Spain, France, Czech Republic, Ireland and Serbia, among others, planted trees in Kayemet L’Israel-Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF)’s President’s Forest in Tzora. All participants received a planting certificate with their name and the country they are representing in Eurovision.

The four-day Israel Calling tour, initiated and produced by Tali Eshkoli, was sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Jerusalem and Heritage, the Ministry of Tourism, the Jewish National Fund and the Municipality of Tel Aviv-Yafo.

(via Israel21c)


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