The Antisemitism Awareness Act

So to Speak: The Free Speech PodcastEp. 214
The Antisemitism Awareness Act

The Antisemitism Awareness Act

On May 1, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Antisemitism Awareness Act by a vote of 320 to 91. Proponents of the law say it is necessary to address anti-Semitic discrimination on college campuses. Opponents argue it threatens free speech.

Who's right?

Kenneth Stern was the lead drafter of the definition of anti-Semitism used in the act. But he said the definition was never meant to punish speech. Rather, it was drafted to help data collectors write reports.

Stern is the director of the Bard Center for the Study of Hate. His most recent book is titled, "The Conflict Over the Conflict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate."


0:00 Introduction

04:06 Introducing Ken Stern

7:59 Can hate speech codes work?

11:13 Off-campus hate speech codes

13:33 Drafting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition

21:53 How should administrators judge anti-Semitism without the IHRA definition?

27:29 Is there a rise in unlawful discrimination on campuses today?

40:20 Opposition to the Antisemitism Awareness Act

43:10 Defenses of the Antisemitism Awareness Act

51:34 Enshrinement of the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism in state laws

53:57 Is the IHRA definition internally consistent?

59:21 How will the Senate vote?

1:01:16 Outro

Show Notes

IHRA definition of anti-Semitism

The Antisemitism Awareness Act


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