Around The Town: Stopping BDS

Compiled by Sharon Wisch-Ray

Hadassah to present program on BDS

The Boycott Divestment and Sanctions movement, also known as BDS is on the mind of many Jews these days.
Fort Worth Chapter of Hadassah will sponsor “What Is BDS  and What Can We Do About It?” at 7 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 3 at Congregation Ahavath Sholom in Fort Worth.
Keynote speaker Rabbi David Komerofsky of San Antonio’s Temple Chai and the former UT Austin Hillel Director, is well versed on BDS. The BDS movement aims to place economic and political pressure on states in order to influence their behavior. By using these tactics, individuals and organizations aim to isolate Israel politically, economically and culturally. Its overall objective is to challenge Israel’s right to exist. A number of Texas legislators are planning to promote anti-BDS legislation when the Texas Congress convenes in January.
Rabbi David Komerofsky is Temple Chai’s spiritual leader.  He was ordained by the Hebrew Union College — Jewish Institute of Religion in 1999, and graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1993.  In addition to his leadership of Temple Chai, he works closely with college campuses through his involvement with Hillel International, and was executive director of Texas Hillel at UT-Austin prior to moving to San Antonio.  Rabbi Komerofsky began his career as an administrator at his alma mater seminary, serving in a variety of roles including dean of students and director of the rabbinical school.
He is married to Ronit Sherwin, CEO of the Jewish Federation of San Antonio. Their blended family includes two sets of boy-girl twins, ages 16 and 6.
Joining Hadassah in bringing the program to fruition are its community partners the Jewish Federation of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, Congregation Ahavath Sholom, Beth-El Congregation, Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Congregation Beth Shalom in Arlington, the Southwest Jewish Congress, the Lil Goldman Early Learning Center (formerly the Jewish Education Agency of Fort Worth and Tarrant County), TCU Hillel and the University of North Texas Hillel at Denton.
The evening is free to the public, bring your friends — everyone is welcome!
For more information, contact Debby Rice at 817-706-5158 or

Fighting back against BDS

The bill being proposed by Texas State Representative for the 61st District Phil King said the language of the bill essentially says “the State of Texas will not do business with any company that is boycotting Israel.”
Because Texas has such a strong attitude toward free markets, King explained it will be a tough bill to pass, but it already has bipartisan support as well as the support Governor Greg Abbott and Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick.
What you can do?
Rep. King explained that the best thing you can do between now and January is contact your state representative and state senator and have your friends do the same and let them know it’s important to you.
“When I get 10 or 15 contacts saying ‘Hey, this issue is important to me,’ it’s on my radar and I’m monitoring it and having my staff monitor it all the way through.” King said.

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