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June 9, 2016

LA Times Editorial Board Criticizes EU Hate Speech Code of Conduct for Online Platforms

In response to a Code of Conduct adopted at the request of the European Commission by online companies Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft, the Los Angeles Times Editorial Board called the Code “a well-meaning but heavy-handed move against jihadist propaganda.”  The Editorial explained:

The code of conduct was presented as a set of voluntary commitments closely tracking what the four companies say they’ve been doing on their own initiatives. But it’s not as if they could have blithely refused to cooperate. Under European law, certain types of hate speech are illegal and must be removed on request. The commission also is a highly active regulator  — much more so than U.S. authorities are — having launched antitrust, tax and privacy enforcement actions against some or all of the four companies. In other words, they would have ignored the commission at their peril.

The LA Times Editorial Board itemized its concerns this way:

  • “The Commission’s move could lead the companies to censor legal speech as well. Rather than leaving companies to set their own terms of use, the code of conduct mandates that such rules “prohibit the promotion of incitement to violence and hateful conduct,” which is a vaguer and broader category than what European governments have outlawed.”
  • “It would fast-track the removal of content flagged by advocacy groups and other non-governmental organizations blessed by European officials, leaving those whose posts are blocked online with no due-process rights (the companies say they have internal appeals processes, but that’s a far cry from the court-supervised process under U.S. copyright law).”
  • “The code could set a precedent for other countries to force Internet companies to restrain speech more than their laws dictate or global principles of human rights support. For example, what if a repressive regime demands that social networks adopt rules banning “incitement to instability” or other code words for dissent?”
  • “But just as the United States has struggled to find the right balance between security and civil liberties, so too must the commission be careful not to squelch legal speech. The new code of conduct may be well-meaning, but it would have been better to have a truly voluntary effort by social networks backed by real due-process protections.”

While Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO has stated that the Code parallels ADL’s Best Practices for Responding to Cyberhate, and that empowering users to better report hate speech is the reason why ADL has brought it Cyber-Safety Action Guide to Europe, ADL acknowledges the concerns expressed by civil society and the Los Angeles Times, and continues to believe that voluntary efforts to combat online hate speech is preferable to government-imposed requirements.  ADL has committed to work with the European Jewish Congress and European Union of Jewish Students to expand ADL’s Cyber-Safety Action Guide for use by European citizens in the wake of the EU Code announcement.

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August 18, 2015

Farrakhan Promotes Anti-Semitism & Violence In Lead Up To Oct. March

Nation of Islam (NOI) leader Louis Farrakhan has invoked hateful anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and called for violence against white people during his multi-city tour to promote the October 10 “Justice…Or Else!” Million Man March (MMM) in Washington, DC.farrakhan-justice-or-else-miami-2015

In his August 13 remarks at a church in Milwaukee, Farrakhan accused Jews of controlling the media, government and economy. Farrakhan told the congregation, “I’m talking about the wicked ones in the Jewish community that run America, run the government, run the world, own the banks, own the means of communication. They are my enemies! But as sure as I’m alive, my enemies will be made my footstool and so will yours.”

Farrakhan also invoked the canard that Jews killed Jesus stating, “Would the Jew had listened to Jesus…but you rebelled against him and killed him.”

In his July 30 remarks in Miami, Farrakhan asserted “A Jew is not a Jew by the circumcision of the male organ but circumcision of the heart.” Farrakhan’s Miami remarks also took a particularly militant tone. He stated, “If the federal government will not intercede in our affairs, then we must rise up and kill those who kill us! Stalk them! And kill them! And let them feel the pain of death that we are feeling!”

Farrakhan employed similar rhetoric in Milwaukee, saying that the media have misrepresented him as violent because “white people deserve to die, and they know, so they think it’s us coming to do it.” He continued, “Allahu akbar! God is great! We have no weapon! We bother nobody! Then if you come to take our life, don’t’ be surprised if you lose your own!”

In an effort to build support for the “Justice…Or Else!” MMM, Farrakhan has spoken in Washington, Philadelphia, New York, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Houston, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, and Memphis.

Malik Zulu Shabazz, the racist and anti-Semitic former leader of the New Black Panther Party and current leader of Black Lawyers for Justice, has also actively been promoting the event for the NOI in various parts of the country.

The NOI has also organized other local events led by African-American religious and community leaders. Some MMM events have featured support from national, state, and local elected officials, celebrities, and others.

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June 30, 2015

Farrakhan Receives Support From Rappers On Social Media

Update — 7/8/15: Read ADL’s new report What is the Nation of Islam?, which provides further information on the NOI’s long record of anti-Semitism.

In the lead-up to the Nation of Islam’s (NOI) 20th Anniversary of the Million Man March scheduled for October 10 in Washington, D.C., anti-Semite Louis Farrakhan has received support from well-known rappers and others, who are helping bring Farrakhan’s message to a broader audience.

Photo with rap artist Rick Ross posted to Farrakhan's Instagram account

Photo with rapper Rick Ross posted to Farrakhan’s Instagram account

According to a June 23 Final Call article Farrakhan “is placing a priority on identifying and energizing youth leadership with support from members of the Hip-Hop community because today’s rappers have more followers on social media—and in real life—than many preachers in America.”

In recent weeks, Farrakhan, the leading anti-Semite in America, has spoken in New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Houston, and Chicago to promote the October event, meeting with various rappers along the way.

Photo with rap artist The Game posted to Farrakhan's Instagram account

Photo with rapper The Game posted to Farrakhan’s Instagram account

Instagram and Twitter posts from rappers posing with Farrakhan or promoting his recent visits have reached a combined 10.9 million followers so far, and many more people through reposts and retweets. Even with some overlap, this represents a significantly larger reach than a post from Farrakhan’s Facebook account (173,000 followers) or his Twitter account (381,000 followers).

Some rappers who have posted messages promoting Farrakhan or the Million Man March anniversary include Rick Ross (3.2 million Instagram followers), The Game (3.1 Million Instagram followers), Birdman (1.6 million Instagram followers), 2 Chainz (1.5 million followers), Young Thug (1.3 million Instagram followers), and Scarface (227,000 Twitter followers).

Photo with musician Ceelo Green posted to Farrakhan's Instagram account

Photo with musician Ceelo Green posted to Farrakhan’s Instagram account

Additionally CeeLo Green met with Farrakhan in Atlanta, and the NOI posted on Facebook a video of Green praising Farrakhan as “legendary.” The NOI also posted photos of Ice Cube meeting Farrakhan in Atlanta, Bun B attending Farrakhan’s June 15 event in Houston, and Kanye West attending Farrakhan’s Los Angeles event on June 17. Kanye West is also working on a documentary on Farrakhan according to Rolling Stone.

Farrakhan has also received support from elected officials in at least three states, including Congresswoman Yvette Clarke and New York State representatives and City Council members who attended Farrakhan’s June 5 event in Harlem.

Farrakhan continues to espouse anti-Jewish hatred at high-profile NOI events, such as in March during his Saviours’ Day address, where he alleged that Jews com­mit­ted the 9/11 attacks and con­trol the U.S. government.

Previous Million Man March anniversaries have featured anti-Semitism including Farrakhan’s two-part 2012 sermon in Chicago and Char­lotte, when Farrakhan spread hateful anti-Semitic myths about Jewish control in the U.S. and a litany of other conspiracy theories.

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