Shalom Life | April 21, 2014

Facebook Not Moved by Emotional Plea From 21 Holocaust Survivors

Social Media giant refuses request to ban Holocaust denial from site

By: Leonard Carl

Published: July 28th, 2011 in Business » World

Facebook Not Moved by Emotional Plea From 21 Holocaust Survivors

In a personal plea made by 21 Holocaust Survivors earlier this month, social media giant Facebook has been asked to refuse access to anyone wanting to use the site to promote Holocaust denial.

Meanwhile, Facebook officials, citing free speech, have refused the survivors’ emotional appeal.

Simon Wiesenthal’s Associate Dean, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, clearly does not accept Facebook’s explanation.

"A review of denial sites currently active on Facebook confirms that it is not mere speech, but that it constitutes at its core a platform for bigotry and hatred of Jews, dead and alive," said Cooper, who insists that he will continue to try and convince Facebook to removed the objectionable material.

The letter, which appears on the Simon Wiesenthal website, reads as follows:

Dear Facebook,

We, the undersigned, are Holocaust Survivors who saw our parents, children and loved ones brutally murdered by the Nazis during the Holocaust. We are writing to you to protest Facebook’s policy that categorizes Holocaust denial as “free speech,” rather than the shameless, cynical and hateful propaganda that it is.

Listen to the voices of Holocaust Survivors. We volunteer and speak at the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) and the Museum of Tolerance (MOT), where we have shared our personal testimonies with millions of visitors and youth. As individuals who are both victims of and witnesses to the truth of the horrors and hate of that time period, we are deeply hurt and offended by your policy that protects Holocaust denial as speech. Above all else, Holocaust denial, in any form, is a desecration of our suffering the suffering and martyrdom of our murdered parents, brothers and sisters.

The SWC has assured us that Facebook is a company with integrity, a company that is willing to live up to its moral and social responsibilities, as you have done in the past by removing hateful postings. Therefore, we have chosen to write to you, under the good auspices of the SWC & MOT, and appeal to you, both individually and collectively, to reevaluate your existing policy.

Do not permit Holocaust denial any platform on Facebook to preach its inherent message of lies and hate. By allowing this hate propaganda on Facebook, you are exposing the public and, in particular, youth to the anti-Semitism which fueled the Holocaust. Please correct this terrible error in judgment before our generation passes away.

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