Florida Senate says no to boycott
Last December, the 5,000-member American Studies Associate passed a resolution to boycott Israel’s academic universities. In January, University of Central Florida President John Hitt publicly announced that he opposed the boycott. At that time, Aaron Weil, executive director and CEO of the Central Florida Hillel, praised Hitt for his stand. “It represents a deep understanding of the flawed nature of boycott’s as well as its unsuitability and inappropriateness in the academic sphere,” he stated.
Now, accolades are due for the Florida Senate as last week they voted unanimously in resolution CS/SR 894 to oppose academic boycotts of Israeli universities. The vote was eight to zero.
Florida is not the only state to propose this bill. Various bills like this one are being proposed in the senates of New York, Maryland and Illinois.
“Let us hope that the precedent set by the State of Florida as well as our local university system has a positive impact on legislation through the country,” said Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando Executive Director Olga Yorish in the Fed Friday weekly mailing.