TimeWed, September 20, 2023 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
A screening of Just Vision’s latest documentary, Boycott, with Lake Forest College followed by a discussion with Suhad Babaa, Just Vision’s President and Executive Director and the film’s Producer, and Brian Hauss, staff attorney at the ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project and Boycott protagonist.
Boycott follows the stories of a news publisher in Arkansas, an attorney in Arizona, and a speech therapist in Texas, who, when forced to choose between their jobs and their political beliefs, launch legal battles that expose an attack on freedom of speech across the US. The film traces the impact of state legislation passed in 36 states – including Illinois – designed to penalize individuals and companies that choose to boycott Israel due to its human rights record. A legal thriller with “accidental plaintiffs” at the center of the story, Boycott is a bracing look at the far-reaching implications of anti-boycott legislation and an inspiring tale of everyday Americans standing up to protect our rights in an age of shifting politics and threats to freedom of speech.
While the original anti-boycott laws passed with wide bi-partisan support, beginning in 2021, conservative legislators began to introduce copycat bills inspired by the Israel-focused anti-boycott bills, taking aim at boycotts of the fossil fuels and firearms industries. Most recently, legislators modified the bill once more to target those organizing for transgender peoples’ rights, abortion access, and workplace equity. Since the start of the year, over 40 copycat bills have been introduced in state legislatures across the country. We hope you’ll join this event to learn more about these laws and their wider implications on our right to voice dissent in America.
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