How peculiar. At my local branch meeting, the vote went against a proposal not to boycott Israeli academics. And against sending our articulate, open, hard-working, transparent anti-boycott campaigner to Congress. What the fuck? And why did people vote that way, when the contra-boycott arguments are the better ones – as shown in last week’s debate which leaned away from a boycott.
Maybe because the delegates who got convincingly elected – call them Daisy and Jim – are existing exec members and ‘deserve’ to go. Maybe because we come across as agenda hijackers, who throw around words like ‘mandate’, have a covert mission to stifle debate and need to be put in their place. Or because members feel mutinous about the boycott-as-antisemitism argument, or irritated by the volume of fuss about an innocent little boycott. Or (hopefully) because the would-be boycotters had recruited people to vote in allegiance. We’d better hope that this is the result of better organisation. Or because we look as if we’re opposed to the exec. Or because everybody can see how everyone else is voting. Or because Jim – who spoke against the motion – came across as a plucky underdog staunchly defending another underdog. Or maybe because members have short memories and have forgotten what happened last year when this had to go an extraordinary meeting before it was overturned. Or because they have a distaste for what they perceive to be a storm in a teacup. Or maybe because they will take any opportunity to punish Israel for Lebanon and the separation fence. Or maybe because there’s a good climate for antisemitism. Maybe because they want to silence David personally. Maybe because they agreed with Jim’s point that debate should remain open. Maybe I wasn’t chatty or detailed enough in proposing Dave (which was on the fucking hop for God’s sake). Maybe Daisy and Jim are better known for their good union work.
Only two of those reasons are directly antisemitic – i.e. in favour of a boycott. The rest are to do with voting against things or in denial of things. Don’t know where that leaves us – I’d be inclined to propose a motion again when we see the whites of the new boycott’s eyes. But maybe there are other ways using our special powers. Joke 😦