BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó



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          SENATE THIRD READING


          SCR  
          35 (Stone)


          As Amended  July 9, 2015


          Majority vote


          SENATE VOTE:  35-0


           -------------------------------------------------------------------- 
          |Committee       |Votes|Ayes                   |Noes                 |
          |                |     |                       |                     |
          |                |     |                       |                     |
          |                |     |                       |                     |
          |----------------+-----+-----------------------+---------------------|
          |Higher          |12-0 |Medina, Baker, Bloom,  |                     |
          |Education       |     |Chávez, Harper, Irwin, |                     |
          |                |     |Jones-Sawyer, Levine,  |                     |
          |                |     |Linder, Low, Santiago, |                     |
          |                |     |Williams               |                     |
          |                |     |                       |                     |
          |                |     |                       |                     |
           -------------------------------------------------------------------- 


          SUMMARY:  Urges the University of California (UC) to condemn  
          anti-Semitism and racism, including Islamophobia and expresses  
          the Legislature's condemnation of anti-Semitic acts at all  
          publically funded schools in California.  Specifically, this  
          resolution:  










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          1)Finds all of the following:


             a)   The United States (U.S.) Department of State defines  
               anti-Semitism as "a certain perception of Jews, which may  
               be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical  
               manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish  
               or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward  
               Jewish community institutions and religious facilities"; 


             b)   There is clear evidence of increasing and alarming  
               incidents and expressions of anti-Semitism throughout the  
               world; 


             c)   From sea to shining sea one can witness the  
               proliferation of anti-Semitic activity; 


             d)   In February of 2015, the California Legislature's Jewish  
               Caucus held a press conference addressing anti-Semitic acts  
               and in the same week an estimated 500 people gathered on  
               the steps of the State Capitol to protest the recent rise  
               in anti-Semitic acts occurring across the nation, including  
               the display of the Nazi swastika symbol superimposed onto  
               an American flag that was hung in the front of a private  
               home in a Sacramento neighborhood, which tarnished the  
               reputation of the Golden State; 


             e)   Swastikas and other anti-Semitic sentiments have  
               increased in recent months on college campuses across the  
               country and around the world; 


             f)   In 2014, the kinds of recorded anti-Semitic acts  
               committed in the U.S. and around the world included  
               murders; violent attacks and death threats against Jews;  








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               arson, graffiti, and property desecration; and murders at  
               Jewish cemeteries, places of worship, schools, and  
               community events; 


             g)   These types of anti-Semitic acts also extended to soccer  
               stadiums, the Internet, editorial cartoons, and the use of  
               Nazi salutes, leading many Jewish individuals to conceal  
               their religious and ethnic identity; 


             h)   In April of 2014, the U.S. Department of State released  
               the International Religious Freedom Report recognizing that  
               anti-Semitism continues to be internationally prevalent; 


             i)   The governments of France, Germany, Italy, and the  
               United Kingdom, the four countries where the majority of  
               anti-Semitic incidents have occurred in Europe, have  
               strongly condemned anti-Semitism as unacceptable in  
               European society and have all made clear statements that  
               such attacks on their Jewish communities are intolerable; 


             j)   The State of California actively promotes tolerance to  
               all faiths and religions; 


             aa)  The U.S. government has played an essential role in  
               counteracting the resurgence of anti-Semitism worldwide and  
               has consistently supported efforts to address the rise in  
               anti-Semitism through its bilateral relationships and  
               participation in international organizations such as the  
               United Nations, the Organization for Security and  
               Co-operation in Europe, and the Organization of American  
               States; and, 


             bb)  The Legislature joins with people everywhere in  








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               unequivocally condemning all forms of anti-Semitism and  
               rejecting attempts to justify anti-Jewish hatred or violent  
               attacks as an acceptable expression of disapproval or  
               frustration over political events in the Middle East or  
               elsewhere.


          2)Resolves all of the following: 


             a)   The Legislature urges each UC campus to adopt a  
               resolution condemning all forms of anti-Semitism and  
               racism, including Islamophobia; 


             b)   The Legislature condemns any act of anti-Semitism at all  
               publicly funded schools in the State of California in order  
               to promote tolerance and acceptance of all religious  
               beliefs in accordance with the rights afforded to each  
               person by the Founding Fathers of this nation and the  
               authors of the U.S. Constitution; and, 


             c)   Nothing in this resolution is intended to diminish the  
               rights of anyone, including students, to freely engage in  
               any speech or other activity protected by the U.S.  
               Constitution, including that which is critical or  
               supportive of the policies of any country.


          FISCAL EFFECT:  None


          COMMENTS:  Purpose of this resolution.  According to the author,  
          "this resolution seeks to condemn the rise of Anti-Semitism that  
          has been seen across the State, not to mention, around the  
          world.  Within the last couple months, we have seen a home in  
          Sacramento proudly displaying a Nazi swastika on top of an  
          American Flag.  In our state, we have seen displays of swastika  








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          and acts of Anti-Semitism on our campuses.  Across the world,  
          there has been an increase in threats against Jewish people.   
          Just last year, in April, the U.S. Department of State released  
          the International Religious Freedom Report, recognizing that  
          anti-Semitism continues to be internationally prevalent."   
          According to the author, "by stating that the Legislature take a  
          strong stand against the recent acts of Anti-Semitism, and  
          urging UC campuses to do the same, this resolution sends a  
          strong message that California will not tolerate this behavior,  
          while fully protecting the rights of free-speech." 


          Anti-Semitism as it relates to the State of Israel.  This  
          resolution references the U.S. Department of State definition of  
          anti-Semitism.  According to the U.S. State Department's Web  
          site that defines anti-Semitism, examples of ways in which  
          anti-Semitism manifests itself with regard to the state of  
          Israel include demonizing Israel ("drawing comparisons between  
          Israeli policy to that of the Nazis"), establishing a  
          double-standard for Israel ("multilateral organizations focusing  
          on Israel only for peace or human rights investigations"), and  
          delegitimizing Israel ("denying the Jewish people their right to  
          self-determination, and denying Israel the right to exist").   
          The U.S. State Department's website also states that "criticism  
          of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country  
          cannot be regarded as anti-Semitic."


          Arguments in support.  The AMCHA Initiative, along with other  
          supporters of this resolution, argues "on many occasions  
          anti-Semitic incidents and behavior at UC have been correlated  
          with anti-Israel events and campaigns, particularly those  
          associated with the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS)  
          movement."  AMCHA notes that identifying anti-Semitic activity  
          by invoking the U.S. State Department's definition "recognizes  
          the varieties of anti-Semitic expression that Jewish students  
          are actually experiencing on their campuses."    










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          Arguments in opposition.  Several organizations, including the  
          California Faculty Association have expressed concern regarding  
          the definition contained in this resolution.  Jewish Voice for  
          Peace argues "the resolution's reference to the State Department  
          definition of anti-Semitism will be used by proponents to  
          stigmatize advocacy for Palestinian rights, and particularly  
          campus campaigns to divest from corporations that profit from  
          Israel's occupation and violations of international law."   
          Opponents of this resolution have requested amendments to use a  
          standard dictionary definition of anti-Semitism rather than  
          reference the State Department definition.




          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Laura Metune / HIGHER ED. / (916) 319-3960  FN:  
          0001180