LVDSA Response to Clark County Democratic Party’s Decision to Remove Recognition of Palestinian Human Rights from Party Platform

April 28, 2020 | Press Release

Press Statement for Immediate Release

We wholly reject the decision by the platform committee of the Clark County Democratic Party to strike three key planks from its platform. These planks all related directly to the acknowledgment of Palestinian human rights and were removed after the end of the amendment process and the publication of the platform’s final draft. The three eliminated planks stand as follows:

We Support ending the blockade of the Gaza Strip.

The blockade of Gaza has been recognized by the United Nations as both a major human rights disaster and a form of collective punishment. The UN, along with countless human rights groups – including many based in Israel – have repeatedly called for the end of the blockade. That the CCDC platform committee should choose to intentionally remove this plank is indefensible.

We support the rights of the Palestinians to return to their homeland.

Since 1948, millions of Palestinians have been displaced from their homes by conflicts they themselves have largely had no participation in. To this day, countless Palestinians across the region live in fear of annexation and displacement from a land where they have lived for centuries. In this very same section of the platform, the CCDC has included multiple planks recognizing the displacement of Native Americans from their ancestral lands. It is absolute hypocrisy to deny the same basic recognition to Palestinians.

We support the repeal of SB26, which prohibits certain governmental entities from contracting with companies that boycott Israel, and we oppose any legislation prohibiting, limiting, or deterring individuals or businesses from the exercise of free speech.

Boycotts are a nonviolent act of protest used from the heroes of the civil rights movement to the worldwide campaign to end apartheid in South Africa. Anti-Apartheid activist and human-rights icon Archbishop Desmond Tutu has himself defend the right of organizations to freely boycott countries with questionable human rights practices. The elimination of this plank is not only a suppression of peaceful criticism of the Israeli government but an affront to the actions of millions of rights activists across the world.

The only plank related to Palestinians presently in the platform is a call for a two-state solution – effectively consigning both Palestinians and Israelis to two racially-segregated states. As nearly 20% of the Israeli population is comprised of an Arab minority, and as there are countless mixed Jewish and Palestinian families across the region, this plank serves only to advocate for the abhorrent “separate-but-equal” policies of the pre-civil rights South. Both the platform committee hearings and amendment process were open and transparent. Calls for the inclusion of the acknowledgment of Palestinian rights were voiced during the sessions without objection. We call upon the platform committee to reverse its decision and reaffirm its support for the rights of all persons – regardless of race, religion, or national origin.

For Inquiries, please contact lasvegasdsa@gmail.com

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