JUSTICE - No. 67

45 Fall 2021 provided, problems with legal tools exist, including the way they are constructed. It is thus worth taking some time to carry out a general “audit” of the effectiveness of law in counteracting antisemitism. The EU and its member states could be used as a test case here. It is in these states that the most relevant legal regulations applied against antisemitism are in force, and the EU remains an organization that is significantly involved in activities against various forms of discrimination and hatred. What is urgently needed is a comprehensive and coherent report that would present the real “state of the union”when it comes to the effectiveness of laws against antisemitism in the EU, a report that would allow real reform with respect to legislating and applying the law against antisemitism. It is crucial to adopt the correct methodology for measuring the“success/ failure rate,” in particular taking into account the challenges posed by the so-called “new technologies” and social media where antisemitism is being spread in an unprecedented way. Some positive developments are already marked in the most recent EU Strategy on Combating Antisemitism and Fostering Jewish Life (2021-2030),3 where the Commission explicitly undertakes to enhance support for training programs and capacity-building activities on tackling antisemitism for justice and law enforcement professionals. Still, the strategy, most needed and welcomed, does not sufficiently address the question of comprehensive, comparative research on the effectiveness of legal tools used against antisemitism in EU member states. Another step that should be taken is investing large amounts of resources in conducting public interest strategic litigation in cases concerning antisemitism. Such litigation should be used both as a way of defending individuals harmed, and as a method of “fighting back” and actively demanding recognition of certain rights before courts, both domestic and international. The case of Professor Michał Bilewicz, a distinguished scholar in the field of psychological dimensions of antisemitism, who was sued for publicly formulating opinions on someone’s antisemitism, is a case in point. As a result of strategic litigation, and thanks to the IJL's involvement, Professor Bilewicz won the case in the Polish courts.4 Law can be a powerful tool of bringing social change and counteracting prejudice and discrimination if used in a wise, coherent, and effective way. n Dr. Aleksandra Gliszczyńska-Grabias is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Law Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences. She is a member of the Board of Governors of the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists, and an advisor to the Open Republic Association against Antisemitism. She is an expert in the fields of anti-discrimination law, constitutional law, freedom of speech and memory laws. She is co-editor and co-author of Constitutionalism under Stress (OUP, 2020), and Law and Memory: Towards Legal Governance of History (CUP, 2017). 3. The strategy is available at https://ec.europa.eu/info/ policies/justice-and-fundamental-rights/combattingdiscrimination/racism-and-xenophobia/combatingantisemitism/strategy-combating-antisemitism-andfostering-jewish-life-eu_en 4. For details of this case, see International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists,“Prof. Michał Bilewicz – with the support of IJL – won the case against Cezary Krysztopa, an antisemitic cartoonist.The court dismissed Krysztopy’s libel claim.” IJL, available at https://www.ijl. org/michal-bilewicz/

RkJQdWJsaXNoZXIy MjgzNzA=