This piece by Bill Mick on HB 741 championed by Rep. Randy Fine, identifies the inevitable collision between the Speech Police and the First Amendment.
Bill’s earlier remarks concerning HB 741 brought the wrath of Mr. Fine in the form of a letter to iHeart Chairman and CEO demanding Bill’s firing. With Mr. Fine’s penchant for name calling, I think perhaps there is more here than just bad legislating.
Mr. Fine is in step with such notables as Pelosi, Biden, Cortez and other Liberals..with Mr. Fine calling Bill Mick and Randy Stackhouse “white nationalist”. Dems just love dividing people into groups. Damn, I’m white and I love my country too!
HOPING GOVERNOR DESANTIS IS CONSISTENT
That news is great as far as it goes. Now comes House Bill 741 (labeled anti-Semitism), having passed the House on a 114-0 vote, will present an interesting conundrum if it clears the Senate and makes the governor’s desk. Governor DeSantis can either sign the bill into law or be consistent with his statements on Monday. He can’t have this both ways.
Taken from flsenate.gov, the language of the bill defines anti-Semitism this way:
51 (7) A public K-20 educational institution must treat
52 discrimination by students or employees or resulting from
53 institutional policies motivated by anti-Semitic intent in an
54 identical manner to discrimination motivated by race. For
55 purposes of this section, the term “anti-Semitism” includes a
56 certain perception of the Jewish people, which may be expressed
57 as hatred toward Jewish people, rhetorical and physical
58 manifestations of anti-Semitism directed toward a person, his or
59 her property, or toward Jewish community institutions or
60 religious facilities.
61 (a) Examples of anti-Semitism include:
62 1. Calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or
63 harming of Jews, often in the name of a radical ideology or an
64 extremist view of religion.
65 2. Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or
66 stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of
67 Jews as a collective, especially, but not exclusively, the myth
68 about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the
69 media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
70 3. Accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real
71 or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or
72 group, the State of Israel, or even for acts committed by non
74 4. Accusing Jews as a people or the State of Israel of
75 inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.
76 5. Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel,
77 or the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the
78 interest of their own nations.
79 (b) Examples of anti-Semitism related to Israel include:
80 1. Demonizing Israel by using the symbols and images
81 associated with classic anti-Semitism to characterize Israel or
82 Israelis, drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to
83 that of the Nazis, or blaming Israel for all inter-religious or
84 political tensions.
85 2. Applying a double standard to Israel by requiring
86 behavior of Israel that is not expected or demanded of any other
87 democratic nation, or focusing peace or human rights
88 investigations only on Israel.
89 3. Delegitimizing Israel by denying the Jewish people
90 their right to self-determination and denying Israel the right
91 to exist.
93 However, criticism of Israel that is similar to criticism toward
94 any other country may not be regarded as anti-Semitic.
95 (c) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to
96 diminish or infringe upon any right protected under the First
97 Amendment to the United States Constitution, or the State
98 Constitution. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to
99 conflict with federal or state discrimination laws.
You’ll note this bill is directed at K-20 educational institutions in the state and has the impact of teaching our kids appropriate behavior. And while no child should be taught to be anti-Semitic, there are provisions highlighted above that give pause and certainly give rise to First Amendment concerns.
Lines 65-69: Making stereotypical characterizations. Stereotypes are based, even if loosely on actual behavior or events. Preventing this discussion stifles learning and understanding in historical context. One of my favorites is respect for the Mossad and their abilities on many fronts. Nobody is better at the spy and tactics game than Israel.
Lines 76-78: Accusing Jews of greater loyalty to Israel than to their home nations. But, what if the allegation is a fact? Truth should be immune from law penalizing it being spoken.
Lines 82-84: Comparing Israeli policy to that of Nazis. But, what if the tactics of Israel are similar and worthy of comparison? Do we create law in this country to keep peoples’ feelings from being hurt? Again, truth has to be the barometer here.
Lines 85-88: Having expectations of Israel that are not expectations of other nations and focusing peace or human rights investigations only on Israel. How many schools conduct these investigations? Why is this even in here? And with Israel being the United States strongest ally in the Middle East, should not our expectations of them be greater than other nations of the region?
This law in these places, and maybe others, so violates the First amendment that the governor should have the VETO pen warmed up when he knows it’s hitting his desk. That a republican lawmaker brought such a bill into existence, in fact, would make one question exactly where his loyalties lie. It certainly does not seem to be with the United States Constitution.
I would never embrace the weakness that a bill such as this portrays for the people of Israel or their fellow Jews across the globe. The insecurity embodied here is indicative of much more than bad lawmaking.
The governor must veto this bill as signing it would be an affront to the Constitution and an insult to the people of Israel and the rest of us!