The first days of the Trump administration have been as dire as anyone could have imagined – with Executive Orders attacking Muslims, Arabs, immigrants, and refugees expected today on top of attacks on women and indigenous people.
Our resistance must continue nationally and locally – and today we have a real chance to defeat a piece of Trump’s agenda right here in Massachusetts.
State Senator Creem of Newton has filed a bill that would attack free speech and nonviolent protestors – the exact last thing we need in the Trump era. Creem’s bill would penalize supporters of the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement for justice, as well as other social movements that employ time-honored tactics of economic pressure.
This isn’t just about our State Senate. This is not just a formality or an isolated attack. It’s not even just about Palestine.
This bill is a piece of a coordinated right-wing attack on our right to organize for justice, period. As Trump and Republican lawmakers attempt to criminalize dissent in Washington, we will not allow free speech suppression in Massachusetts. With so many people taking to the streets right now fighting for justice, equity, and democracy, it’s more important than ever to resist any and all attacks on our movements.
Senator Creem’s bill* – SD922 – is framed as anti-discrimination legislation, when in reality it forbids the state from contracting with institutions and individuals who boycott Israeli occupation and policies of apartheid. If Senator Creem had introduced this bill in 1975, it would have made activism against South African Apartheid substantially more difficult.
In July, when Senator Creem tried to slip an anti-boycott amendment into the Economic Development Bill, we mobilized so quickly that she withdrew the amendment on the very same day.
Our coalition can stop it again. But only with your support. Call your senator now and ask that they oppose the bill – we’ll connect you directly.
Nearly 100 Massachusetts organizations have signed a statement opposing any legislation that impedes the right to boycott. That includes groups representing Muslims, Christians, Jews, American Indians, students, professors, labor unions, lawyers, and LGBTQ communities; as well as advocates on human rights, peace and justice, anti-racism, housing, criminal justice reform, corporate accountability, civil liberties, and climate change. We’re part of a team led by Massachusetts Peace Action and the Boston Alliance for Water Justice in Palestine.
After you’ve called your senator, please spread the word. We need to act fast.