For 120 years, the Workers Circle has actively combated hatred in all its forms, including anti-Semitism, which has particular resonance for us as a Jewish organization.
We are outraged by President Donald Trump’s executive order that creates an overly broad definition of what constitutes anti-Semitism and would effectively interpret Judaism under federal anti-discrimination law as both a religion and an ethnicity.
This thinly veiled attempt to censor free speech, on college campuses or elsewhere, will only divide us further as we continue to collectively pursue freedom for all people.
Further, this classification of Judaism will serve to further isolate the Jewish people in the face of the rise of white nationalist-driven bigotry in the United States. Altogether, this executive order is going down a very dangerous path.
At the Workers Circle, we promote freedom of expression as an essential part of a healthy society. We vehemently reject the idea that if you express legitimate opposition to Israeli government policies, you are an anti-Semite.
We recognize that there are occasions when opposition to Israeli policies and Zionism crosses the line into anti-Semitism. When that happens, we have and will continue to call out those statements for what they are.
But this executive order will not help us to do that.