Party Opposes Attack on First Amendment Rights
The Pacific Green Party condemns Oregon SCR 9, "Condemning BDS," and supports the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, a non-violent means to ending Israel's Apartheid regime.
SCR 9 is an insult to democracy, as it condemns our right to think and act critically as citizens. It seeks to suppress Oregonians' right to freedom of speech and political action to serve the interests of a foreign government. The Oregon Pacific Green Party, along with the national Green Party, unequivocally supports the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, which seeks to end Israel's apartheid regime without violence, as it did South Africa's and as previous boycotts helped to end official racial segregation and oppression in the US.
The Supreme Court of the US held in NAACP vs. Clayborne Hardware, back in 1982, that there is a right to boycott conferred by the First Amendment. It is a peaceful form of political speech and assembly, protected by the Constitution. SCR 9 would condemn the Bill of Rights. It would also insult the many Oregonians and organizations who support BDS.
Religious organizations that have voted to participate in some form of BDS include, but are not limited to, the following:
World Council of Churches; Presbyterian Church U.S.A; United Methodist Church; United Church of Christ; Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Unitarian Universalist Association; Alliance of Baptists; Mennonite Central Committee; American Friends Service Committee; Quaker Friends Fiduciary Corporation; Catholic Conference of Major Superiors of Men; National Coalition of American Nuns; Roman Catholic Pax Christi.
Seven Nobel Prize recipients:
South African Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu, endorses the BDS-Israel campaign, advocating that BDS be modeled on the successful historical, but controversial, disinvestment campaign against South Africa's apartheid system. Yes, oddly enough, demanding human rights - equally and for all - is sometimes viewed as "controversial."
George P. Smith, a renowned scientist and longtime advocate for Palestinian rights has announced his support of the BDS movement and has called for an end to US military aid to Israel. The US government should be investing in human needs, including health, education and dignified jobs, rather than giving Israel $3.8 billion in military aid a year - $10.5 million per day - to repress and destroy Palestinian life.
Mairead Maguire - Her work on the Russell Tribunal on Palestine/Israel and its ultimate findings and conclusions led her to a refusal to remain silent on the grave injustices of the decades long occupation of the Palestinian people.Other Nobel Laureates supporting BDS: Adolfo Peres Esquivel, Jody Williams, Rigoberta Menchú, and Betty Williams.
The Oregon Pacific Green Party calls on the Rules Committee of the Oregon Senate to not forward SCR9 to the floor for a vote but instead uphold our Constitutional rights.
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