Will boycott law shock American liberals into some realization about the character of the only democracy in the Middle East?

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Even the New York Times gets it; the Knesset’s passage of a law making boycott-advocacy punishable is an historic restriction on free speech. In the only democracy in the Middle East! Two friends’ responses– neither of them people who follow the issue:

–I all but had to revive my husband a few moments ago after he read about the boycott bill in Israel.  “It’s insane! Do they have a first amendment there?” he asked. And then: “Is there any reality-based community left in Israel?”

–What imaginable federal law in the U.S. circa 1962 prohibiting interference
with Southern segregation might have been analogous to the Israeli boycott law?
What effect would the passage and the enforcement of such a law have had on the history of the American civil rights movement whose triumph we celebrate?

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