Kansas Law To Protect Racist Apartheid Israel Is Unconstitutional

BTR News (Kansas) – Federal Judge Daniel Crabtree issued a preliminary injunction on Tuesday, prohibiting the state from acting for the duration of a lawsuit filed in October by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Esther Koontz, a longtime Wichita public school teacher.

The suit derives from Koontz’s adherence to the Palestinian call for BDS. Alongside fellow members of the Mennonite Church USA and in solidarity with Palestinians, she decided to boycott all consumer products from both Israeli companies and those that operate in Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

After the passage of the anti-BDS law, all Kansas state employees were required to sign a certification guaranteeing they do not participate in the boycott of Israel.

When Koontz refused, the state retributively ended its working relationship with her, despite the fact that Koontz is qualified statewide to train teachers as a contractor with the Kansas Department of Education’s Math and Science Partnerships program.

In a statement, Micah Kubic, director of the ACLU of Kansas, called the judge’s ruling a “notable victory for the First Amendment.”BTR News (Kansas) – A federal judge has blocked Kansas from enforcing a state law which punishes those who express support or engage in boycotting of Israel’s apartheid policies. The Anti-First Amendment legislation has been passed in parts of the United States that are clear evidence of the meddling of Israel in US politics mostly through The American Israel Public Affairs Committee. BTR News has covered this issue in the past and pointed out that it is not just Republicans like Donald Trump who support Israel over the constitutional rights of American citizens.

In 2015, President Obama violated his oath to uphold the US Constitution which includes free speech provisions, when he signed into law a controversial trade measure that contained landmark legislation aimed at European nations who may take issue with doing business with companies based in the racist and religiously bigoted apartheid nation of Israel.

The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign is an international campaign to force Israel to change its apartheid policies much like during the 80s when a similar movement targeting South Africa helped bring about an end to its apartheid government and release of political prisoners like Nelson Mandela.

In 2016, Hillary Clinton attended a conference where she spoke in front of AIPAC which exist solely in the United States to influence politicians to enact policies favorable to Israel. Clinton attacked the BDS movement and portrayed it as an expression of anti-semitism.

As we pointed out back then, anti-BDS legislation has its roots in racism/white supremacy and has been used to target the civil rights movement and led to the arrests of people like Martin Luther King Jr. who used boycotts as a non-violent means to target racist US companies that supported segregation.

According to reports,

Federal Judge Daniel Crabtree issued a preliminary injunction on Tuesday, prohibiting the state from acting for the duration of a lawsuit filed in October by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Esther Koontz, a longtime Wichita public school teacher.

The suit derives from Koontz’s adherence to the Palestinian call for BDS. Alongside fellow members of the Mennonite Church USA and in solidarity with Palestinians, she decided to boycott all consumer products from both Israeli companies and those that operate in Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank. After the passage of the anti-BDS law, all Kansas state employees were required to sign a certification guaranteeing they do not participate in the boycott of Israel.

When Koontz refused, the state retributively ended its working relationship with her, despite the fact that Koontz is qualified statewide to train teachers as a contractor with the Kansas Department of Education’s Math and Science Partnerships program. In a statement, Micah Kubic, director of the ACLU of Kansas, called the judge’s ruling a “notable victory for the First Amendment.

This is indeed a victory for the free expression of Americans and their right to engage in social movements for social change.

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