Recently, a facebook event went up called Kill a Jew for getting Mein (Kampf(C wat I did thar!?)) accounts disabled. The page, which seems to be someone’s juvenile idea of a joke, is filled with anti-semitic comments and pictures of Hitler’s face. Although I believe few would take it seriously, and no specific plans are listed on the event wall, the event quite blatantly promotes violence against Jews.

In response another facebook event, ONE MILLION STRONG AGAINST KILL A JEW DAY, was created by facebook users who found the event to be offensive.  The latter page asks users to demand facebook take down the event by clicking on facebook’s “report event” option, under which a “direct call for violence” is one of the choices that can be selected.   

While I agree that the material is offensive, I searched “hate jews” under other facebook pages and found many similar groups and events. One of the most populat ones is called I Hate Israel and Jews, and has 243 members. However, I wasn’t invited to any groups or events against this page, which has been around for at least a month, whereas the Kill Jews event, which has a mere 52 members attending, already has an event demanding its removal.

(In addition, it is worth noting that the event against the Killing of Jews (the anti-anti-Semitic one) has a staggering 10, 374 confirmed guests.)

So, what is the difference between the event urging people to Kill Jews and the I Hate Jews and Israel? From a legal perspective they are both expressing a matter of opinion, people exercising their freedom of speech. However, the second one could be seen as “inciting violence”, encouraging people to take action against Jews…but is it really doing that? It’s all in the event’s title, but the page itself doesn’t contain information about plans to commit violence, so does it even live up to its hype? I personally don’t see it as dangerous, but I definitely understand why it would offend people and why it’s scary to have sites like that exist. I guess my question is whether there really is a difference between the Kill Jews event and the Hate Jews group. As of now, facebook has removed neither of them, but as more and more people report the sites as offensive and dangerous material, will another decision be made?

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2 comments on “Should facebook allow an event which promotes violence against Jews?”

  1. Alan Royals Says:

    “From a legal perspective” Facebook is a private entity. 1st Amendment jurisprudence such as whether the speech extends to action by “inciting violence”, does not apply.

    http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=107098542656576&ref=search <– the post reminded me of this deplorable group.

  2. Les Lee Says:

    Elly,
    I am glad you brought this to our attention. It is very dangerous to let things like this go unanswered. Hate groups are never harmless. People are influenced and even “passive” bystanders begin to feel comfortable with this type of rhetoric which makes it quite perilous. I urge everyone to write to Facebook and tell them to ban the group from its site. Facebook has been making some poor decisions lately: they had better do the right thing. LL