New York, NY, August 22, 2012 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has submitted to the platform committees of both the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Republican National Committee (RNC) a statement of policy priorities on a range of international and domestic issues. The platform statement describes ADL's positions on priority issues and outlines recommendations on policy directions that the League hopes the parties will adopt.
Platform committees meet every four years in advance of the national conventions. The League has a longstanding practice of submitting its policy agenda and priorities to both parties prior to the nominating conventions. The following are highlights from ADL's submission:
ADL believes that the federal government has an essential role to play in helping law enforcement, communities, and schools prevent and respond to anti-Semitism by implementing effective anti-bias education and hate crimes prevention programs. The U.S. must take a leadership role in mobilizing government and international organizational efforts to confront anti-Semitism, racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and all forms of hatred and bigotry. The U.S. must make it clear to leaders in the Arab and Muslim world that the anti-Semitic propaganda that continues to proliferate runs contrary to human rights norms and is an impediment to progress.
ADL believes that the U.S. must continue its historic support for the State of Israel and its fundamental right to protect its citizens from terrorism, while promoting a peaceful resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict. The U.S. must stand with Israel to promote its security and to minimize strategic dangers. The U.S. should maintain a central role in the promotion of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and urge the Palestinians to re-engage in direct negotiations with Israel.
Preventing a nuclear Iran is in the U.S. security interest and that of our allies, including Israel. The U.S. must continue to send a strong bipartisan message to the Iranian regime that the U.S. is resolute in its commitment to prevent Iran from attaining a nuclear weapons capability. This includes sharply tightening and enforcing sanctions to buttress diplomatic efforts. No options, including military action, should be excluded to prevent Iran from achieving the capability to produce a nuclear weapon.
ADL believes that law enforcement must be appropriately empowered to prevent acts of domestic terrorism and extremist violence. ADL supports limiting access to the U.S. for individuals involved in terrorism, establishing sanctions on nations that support terrorism and banning material support and fundraising for designated foreign terrorist organizations.
ADL supports new federal authority to investigate and prosecute crimes in which bias violence occurs because of the victim's race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or disability. While prejudice and hatred cannot be legislated out of existence, hate crime data collection laws have proved to be useful tools for law enforcement.
ADL is concerned about the rise in bias and hate violence directed against Hispanics and Muslims.
Anti-bullying laws should include a strong, inclusive definition of bullying, which includes cyberbullying, along with enumerated categories, particularly bullying motivated by race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression. The federal government should work with youth-oriented private corporations, including Cartoon Network, MTV, Facebook and YouTube to promote programs and awareness of the nature and magnitude of bias and bullying – and what can be done to confront it.
ADL urges the committees to reaffirm a commitment to the separation of church and state and the preservation of religious freedom:
Comprehensive immigration reform is necessary in order to effectively decrease the flow of undocumented workers while treating every individual with dignity. ADL calls on all parties to the discussion to debate immigration policy civilly and respectfully. ADL also supports the recent U.S. policy to grant undocumented immigrant youth, who were brought to the U.S. as children, relief from being deported.
The statement includes other ADL policy recommendations on:
A 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, ADL neither supports nor opposes any candidate for political office.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.