I was dismayed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s June 12 op-ed, “If you boycott Israel, New York will boycott you,” justifying his blatantly unconstitutional executive order creating a blacklist of supporters of Palestinian rights. The Democratic governor compared the nonviolent boycott, divestment and sanctions movement to terrorism. The call for BDS was instituted by Palestinian civil society leaders in response to decades of human rights abuses that governments and leaders have not been able to abate.
This was a hyperbolic attack on a constitutional right to boycott and a chilling attack on free speech. Criticizing and protesting a foreign government is not discrimination.
Furthermore, Mr. Cuomo’s statements represented sheer hypocrisy, as he saw nothing wrong with “discriminating” against the state of North Carolina by instituting a state nonessential-travel ban after it enacted a law restricting public-restroom use by transgender people.
Mr. Cuomo should remember that he was elected to serve the people of New York, in the United States, where freedom of speech and protest are constitutional rights.
Jenn Gorelik, Arlington
The writer is a member of the D.C. chapter of
Jewish Voice for Peace.