Reader and commenter Jeff left a comment on my last Good News Friday installment which deserves a post of its own.
Jeff very courageously took the initiative, when choosing a retirement home, and challenged the home on its support for BDS. He used the letter and spirit of the law and turned it against their support for BDS – and scored a victory!
Here is his comment:
… the good news here in the US: after months of research, while we are planning to move into a retirement community, it turned out that four levels up in the ownership is the Presbyterian Church (USA), that two years ago adopted the BDS movement’s resolution. That created a serious conflict for me, but instead of brushing things off and looking elsewhere I decided to do something about it. After all, these residents are friends, former neighbors, some Jewish. They also have no idea what BDS is or what four levels of corporate bureaucracy above them has done.
My home state [name redacted] is one of 21 states (so far) that have outlawed adopting BDS resolutions if doing business with the state. First, find the business that’s being done. I found that they have nursing home beds certified, contracted, and when occupied by indigent patients, are paid for by the state. There’s the hook, complete with the barb.
The law, sent to me by the supervisory state agency, requires the business to certify they are eligible to do business with the state, including no sponsorship of BDS. There’s the rod and reel. They cannot survive without using what is called state medical assistance. That’s the net.
And, because I care about the community and the people, all they have to do at the local level is disavow BDS resolutions of upper levels. That’s the release from the net, and one less BDS “advocate”. Mission accomplished at the first retirement community!
What’s left to do? The rest of the facilities in the state. And then the 20 other states. And the other churches. You see, I built and opened the first Kosher Life Care Retirement Community in the US. I was deeply hurt to learn that years later it was bought by a Wesley organization, whose parent national church also adopted BDS. Churches are susceptible to being fooled by BDS. There’s much work to do, but this particular one is very personal.
One thing that can help is advice and some small assistance from some Jewish organizations. Unbelievably, none were interested. For instance, The Brandeis Center focuses on fighting BDS on college campuses. They do a great job, but just for colleges, not old people. It would be great if someone could refer me to an outreach of Israel that is dealing with BDS. Then we would have such a greater chance of wider, maybe national American success with this particular business sector. A business often operated by Churches.
Success that doesn’t cost more than time and postage, and the very significant act of disavowing at the local level what the politicians and the busy executives at the tops of these peace loving organizations have done. Perhaps giving other organizations reason to think twice. If it works, it’ll be great. Join the fun!
Maybe they’ll only have to think — carefully — once.
Jeff, I salute your courage and admire your persistence in countering the BDS-supporting Presbyterian Church (which has a dismal record in this respect – see the link for an example) and following through with that one step further in getting the retirement home to disavow BDS. That is a step that you average layman doesn’t always think about, and even if they do, they don’t know how to go about combatting it.
Kol hakavod on your principled stance!
If you would like more support in countering BDS you could get in touch with one of the following – they will no doubt have more resources and advice for you:
And for my readers, Jeff’s actions could be easily emulated by every one of us in our day to day lives. If we work together we can erase this antisemitic scourge of BDS.