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How far can an employee of the government go in writing attacks on Israel and Jews or supporting Hamas and the Palestinians?
In a Senate hearing, DHS Secretary Majorkas was called out by Senator Josh Hawley about one of his DHS employees:
After asking about the prospect of revoking visas from foreign students calling for the destruction of Israel and Jewish people, Hawley read one such social media post and asked for Mayorkas’ opinion on the rhetoric.
‘What about people who say things like, on October the seventh, ‘F Israel’ — I’m cleaning up the language here — ‘F Israel, the government and its military, are you ready for your downfall?’ People who say things like, ‘F Israel and any Jew who supports Israel. May your conscience haunt your dreams until your last breath. Palestine will be free one day. F apartheid Israel,’ This is pretty extreme rhetoric, don’t you think?’
Hawley stated that the employee made other pro-Hamas comments, identifying the employee as an asylum and immigration officer. He wondered if her beliefs could influence the decisions she would make in her role.
This situation raises so many questions about government power and free speech—
- Does the government have the right to judge the beliefs of an employee?
- Is the government permitted to penalize an employee, including firing, who states anti-Israel, anti-Semitic, and pro-Hamas statements on social media?
- Does the job of the employee and its relationship to the stated beliefs make a difference in punishing the employee?
What if a person voiced anti-Hamas or pro-Israel comments?
Do you side with Senator Hawley?Published in