http://www.codoh.org | October 5, 2000
Hate Hurts, But Bullets Kill
by George Brewer
The Anti-Defamation League of B'nai Brith, an organization devoted to combating Anti-Semitism and bigotry, has started up a new campaign to promote tolerance among children. It's called the "Close the Book on Hate Campaign" and is keyed to the marketing of a new ADL sponsored book, entitled, Hate Hurts.
According to the promotional literature, the "innovative" new book "explores how to answer difficult questions" that children might ask, presumably about prejudice, and about how and why people are different. All in all this is a good idea. Children should not be taught to hate, or to draw snap judgments about other people.
We haven't received our copy yet but we can guess what kinds of things are in the book, based on the kinds of things that are on the ADL website. Judging by what we read there, the ADL is committed to making sure that kids aren't exposed to anything that might give them a tummy ache or maybe hurt their tender little feelings.
So, for example, we see that in the past few days the ADL has laid into the Nextel Corporation, a Filipino outfit that markets cellular equipment, for an ad campaign that touts the "Final Communication Solution" and which features Adolf Hitler jaw-jacking on his own cell phone.
Another recent ADL press release describes how the ADL succeeded in getting another apology from the people who brought you Pokemon, but, no, this apology had nothing to do with inflicting Pikachu, the yellow rat with an electrified tail, onto the American public.
No, this has to do with a prize competition being touted on cereal boxes, featuring a six-pointed star that for some reason came out on some of the boxes as "Jude Star" instead of the intended "Jade Star." Of course, this was a goof, and we would expect the cereal company to correct it, what we don't expect, and don't need, is to be informed that the ADL is on the supermarket cereal trenches ensuring that no child inadvertently consumes prejudice that stays crunchy in milk.
Of course, both of these recent press releases are indicative of the ADL's hyper-sensitivity and inability to deal with the fact that the three billion or so people who live in Asia do not really think much about the Holocaust or its sacred symbols, as was discussed in a Revisionist article earlier this year "Asians Just Don't Get It". But the ADL did at least make a tiny concession in the latest Pokemon release about how the swastika is a sacred symbol to "some" Asians.
In addition to the latest press releases that are geared to protecting kids, in recent years the ADL has also extracted apologies
from Superman Comics, for a story line about the Holocaust that was "insensitive" because it didn't specify that any of the victims were Jews, and a TV show for its portrayal of a lovable Yiddish zeyde (grandfather). We can imagine that Hate Hurts, with or without an exclamation point, will cover similar ground.
Yet, after receiving some recent correspondence, we wonder if one of the "difficult questions" being "explored" in Hate Hurts might be one like this: "What happens when a 12 year old kid is shot while cowering behind his father in Israeli occupied territory?" For some reason, we don't think that question is going to be addressed, and if it were, the answer, based on what we have seen, would be "Nothing."
It seems that a few days ago a 37 year old Palestinian living in the occupied Gaza Strip went out with his 12 year old son to look at a used car. They found themselves in the middle of a street battle between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli soldiers. They tried to hide behind a small cinder block abutment to a building, and that's when they were caught by the French cameramen.
Israeli soldiers killed a 12 years old child. (Mohamed Aldorra), while his father was protecting him with his body. Everybody was
watching and couldn't do anything, a Red Cross driver tried to help the child so he was shot and killed in the spot. The Child and
Driver were killed in cold blood. These are the pictures, look carefully and see the real face of Israel.
You can see the father start waving, in a panic, for the soldiers not to shoot. And you can see the boy, clearly terrified, trying to hide behind his slender father's frame. And then there's a fusillade of bullets and the boy is dead, with the father severely injured.
You can tell it's a big story because immediately there were denials from the Israeli Defense Forces, claiming that they hadn't fired the shots. Of course, the alternative, that some Palestinians shot the two for propaganda purposes, is kind of hard to believe, but furthermore most of the eyewitnesses, including the father, insist that the killers were Israeli soldiers, and from the camera shot it appears that it occurred at close range.
We guess the Israeli authorities felt they had a credibility problem, because a day later Israel's deputy chief of staff, Moshe Yaalon, announced that the Israelis were convinced that the boy intended to throw rocks. Well, I guess that settles that. Read people's minds, and then blow their heads off.
Now, we would expect something to be done about this. Sometimes a photograph can really have an impact. We all remember how the American people turned against the Vietnam war, we forget the critical photos that turned the tide of public opinion: the naked girl running in terror from a napalm raid, the South Vietnamese general casually shooting a blindfolded hostage.
So we would expect this photo of this little boy being shot in cold blood to change some minds, or at least to create enough pressure to generate some decency. Maybe a court martial or two, at the very least. Unfortunately, it appears the flagrant shooting of this boy is being forgotten. Naturally, thinking about how hate hurts our kids, and thinking about how the ADL is always on the front line in protecting them, we turned to their Website to see how they would handle this affair.
Mind you, we don't believe that every Jew or even any American Jew is responsible for the reckless shootings by the Israeli Defense Forces. But on the other hand, if an organization sells itself as defending Jewish interests, constantly delivers sermons about Jewish and Israeli interests, and furthermore is always carrying on about protecting children, we have a certain expectation that they will have something to say about this case, too.
Imagine our surprise when we found that the ADL's only pronouncement on the recent violence, which has taken the lives of 46 Arabs and two Jews, is that the current violence was "clearly incited and stoked by the Palestinian leadership" and that Arafat should do something to stop it. That's all.
Nothing about our 12 year old kid at all. Nothing about a measure of individual justice for an inexcusable individual killing of a child, nothing about an apology, or a desire to make amends, or pay compensation, or punishing the boy's killers. Nothing.
Moral leadership is a difficult thing. But if you can't stand up on your hindlegs and condemn the brutal and careless killing of a child, you don't deserve to be listened to. The ADL's silence in the case of the shooting of a 12 year old Palestinian boy on TV reminds us of the extent to which the ADL is willing to close the book on its own moral authority by its timidity, and it further reminds us of the extent to which the "Close the Book on Hate" campaign is a stupid joke.
Zealously monitoring comic books, trading cards, TV shows, and cereal boxes: that's the caliber of ADL moral leadership. But when it comes to dead kids, the ADL is, to quote a title, Eyeless in Gaza.
Hate Hurts? Yeah, sure. But Bullets Kill.
George Brewer is editor of The Revisionist www.codoh.org, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: European/American Issues Forum, CW Kuhn, Secretary--CW Johns, Treasurer--FP Williams, Sgt. at Arms
Louis Calabro, President --David Winzer, Vice President
'Hate Hurts- How Children Learn and Unlearn Prejudice- A Guide for Adults and Children'
By The Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith,
September 2000-Publisher-Scholastic Inc. New York.
Book Review, by Louis Calabro
September 27, 2000
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) recently joined forces with Barnes and Noble to launch a campaign called 'Close the Book on Hate'. Their recently published book 'Hate Hurts...' being reviewed herein, is considered a first step in that direction.
Unfortunately the book is a continuation of what appears to be their policy of stigmatizing and stereotyping European Americans as the primary purveyors of racial animus and the primary perpetrators of hate crimes. In fact, the ADL and Barnes and Noble, acting as the teachers of minimizing bigotry, racism and stereotyping are eagerly practicing and promoting those exact undesirable traits. For example, the first page of the book starts out:
"Dear Readers, Mention Laramie, Wyoming, Jasper, Texas, or Littleton, Colorado, and our collective conscience is assaulted by the brutal hate crimes committed in those places. We store in our mind's eye the image of five year old children clutching one another's hands as they run from a Jewish Community day care center under attack by an anti-semite."
What that opening paragraph tells the readers of this book is that all of the perpetrators of bigotry, racism and stereotyping are European Americans and our collective conscience is assaulted by the brutal hate crimes committed [by European Americans}....
Yes, the book begins by teaching that all of the "bad" people in those three cases are European Americans and follows that pattern throughout the book. That isn't reality.
That pattern is consistent throughout the book. A review of Chapter 13, titled "Crimes of Hate: Physical and Emotional Violence", solidifies by using concrete examples the notion of emphasizing European American involvement in racial animus cases and as the perpetrators of hate crimes. All other racial/ethnic groups are their victims. The Chapter has victims like "spic", black, Jewish, Asian and gay victims, but no European American victims. The Chapter also mentions Nazi Germany and KKK members burning black churches, but no other racial/ethnic groups or members are cited as concrete examples of being the purveyors of racial animus or the perpetrators of hate crimes.
The ADL and Barnes and Noble could easily have included the Racine, Wisconsin and Jacksonville, FL. as concrete examples of hate crime cases where European Americans were victims of significant and brutal racially motivated hate crimes.
The significance of the Racine, Wisconsin case is that it was used by the U.S. Supreme Court in Wisconsin vs. Mitchell, (1993) to confirm the constitutionality of hate crime penalty enhancement statutes.
In Wisconsin vs. Mitchell a group of non-European American men and boys discussed the picture Mississippi Burning which had a scene where a white man beat a young black boy who was praying. They wanted to move on some white people and while they were out walking they passed a white boy and Mitchell said, "You all want to fuck somebody up" There goes a white boy, go get him." They did get him and they beat the boy so severely he remained in a coma for four days.
Similarly, and in an almost exact mirrored case, in August 1999, and after seeing a picture called A Time to Kill, 5-6 non-European American young men decided to beat up the first white man that came along. The picture was about two white men who raped a young African American girl and her father sought revenge by shooting both of them. Unfortunately, European American mentally retarded 50 year old Gregory Griffith was the first "white" man to come along and they proceeded to brutally beat and stomp him to death. Two have been convicted. Others await trial.
The ADL knows, and Barnes and Noble should know that the 1998 FBI Hate Crime Statistical report reflects that there were nine (9) racially motivated murders in 1998 and five (5) of the nine victims were European Americans. But, it appears these facts are of no importance to the ADL and Barnes and Noble.
The ADL knows that the San Francisco Police Department Hate Crime Statistical reports 1995-1999, document that European Americans were victims of racially motivated multiple assailant street attacks more often than any other racial/ethnic group.
Knowing that they are cognizant of the above censored facts that are not presented in their book is deeply troubling and frightening to European Americans. It is incomprehensible that the ADL would write a book that will be read by parents, teachers, administrators, students and some citizens that fails to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth. That is an unacceptable form of bigotry.
This book 'Hate-Hurts-How Children Learn and Unlearn Prejudice' debases, denigrates, dehumanizes and discriminates against European American students and the at-large European American community and is not appropriate as material that can be used for instructional material in San Mateo county. We respectfully request that the San Mateo County Board of Education declare this book as inappropriate for use in our county and remove it from the county Resource Center.
Louis Calabro, President.
European/American Issues Forum
Where 'Caught in the Crossfire' Can Leave No Room
By Robert Fisk, 2 October 2000
When I read the word "crossfire", I reach for my pen. In the Middle East, it almost always means that the Israelis have killed an innocent person. When the Israelis fired shells into the United Nations compound at Qana in southern Lebanon in 1996, Time magazine printed a photograph of a dead baby with a caption saying it had been killed in "crossfire". This was untrue. The baby had been killed in the Israeli bombardment along with 105 other civilians - which started after Hizbollah guerrillas opened fire on an Israeli army unit that was laying booby-trap mines inside the UN zone.
So when 12-year-old Mohammed al-Durah was killed in Gaza on Saturday and I read on the Associated Press wire that the child was "caught in the crossfire", I knew at once who had killed him. Sure enough, reporters investigating the killing said the boy was shot by Israeli troops. So was his father - who survived - and so was the ambulance driver who was killed trying to rescue the boy. Yet BBC World Service Television was still saying yesterday morning that Mohammed al-Durah was "caught in the crossfire of a battle that has left hundreds wounded and killed many others". I knew what this meant.
True, the Israeli soldiers who killed the boy may not have known whom they hit. They were apparently firing through a wall. But why the reluctance on the part of journalists to tell the truth? Why was it that in its report from Jerusalem on Saturday, the AP only mentioned - in paragraph 17, for heaven's sake - that Israeli troops, on the word of their own officer, fired anti-tank missiles during the confrontation? What was the Israeli army doing using missiles against rioters?
By yesterday afternoon, the story had been transformed into a "blame" conflict. The Israelis blamed the Palestinian authority for organising riots. BBC World Service radio ran a tape of an Israeli official stating that rioters were "shooting [sic] Molotov cocktails and stones" which "kill people". A listener might have been forgiven for thinking that 22 Israelis had been killed - rather than 22 Palestinians - in the previous 72 hours. The BBC then ran a tape of Nabil Shaath, the Palestinian spokesman, saying that the Israelis, not the Palestinians, had been shooting.
Truth is a hard bullet to bite. Palestinian policemen had also opened fire on the Israelis. Ironically, the Arab press in Beirut had no hesitation in saying this. The press in Lebanon showed photographs of Palestinian policemen firing Kalashnikov rifles at Israeli troops. But, given the fact that they did not kill Israelis - one of them was hit while firing - was it not worth mentioning that the Palestinians were the victims, not the Israelis?
When BBC Television got round to mentioning Ariel Sharon's flagrantly provocative visit to the Haram as-Sharif/Temple Mount on Thursday, they yesterday called him an "Israeli leader" when - for Palestinians - he was the man who bore indirect responsibility (according to Israel's own inquiry) for the massacre of up to 2,000 Palestinian civilians in the Sabra and Chatila refugee camps in Beirut 18 years ago. The BBC correspondent, Paul Adams, was one of the very few who bravely drew attention to Sharon's appalling record, pointing out Sharon had "an extraordinary capacity to leave... destruction in his wake."
And so, by last night, the story had changed. No longer did Israeli soldiers and policemen kill at least 22 Palestinians in three days; now the question was whether the Palestinian Authority organised the riots that "led" [sic] to their deaths. The Israeli soldiers, who disobeyed every human rights commitment by firing on rioters with live rounds, were respectfully called the "Israeli security forces", disregarding the fact that "security" was the one thing Israeli soldiers were clearly unable to provide.
On CNN and the BBC and other satellite chains, reporters were asked if the killings would upset the "peace process", with no willingness to explain that it was the collapse of the peace process which lay at the heart of the riots. The Muslim holy areas of Jerusalem were "disputed" - although UN Security Council resolution 242, upon which the "peace process" is supposedly based, demands the withdrawal of Israeli forces from territories captured during the 1967 war, including east Jerusalem.
What lies behind this - apart from the sheep-like inability of many journalists to call a spade a spade - was the continuing belief that Palestinians are, by nature, violent and riotous.
The United States called for an end to the "violence" - this courtesy of Secretary of State Madeleine Albright - without making any reference to Sharon's grotesque visit to the mosque grounds of east Jerusalem. By yesterday afternoon, the BBC were at it again, reporting that "Israeli authorities were bracing themselves for what may lie ahead". Weren't the Palestinians also doing that?
Source: New York Times, September 12, 2000
Close the Book on Hate
NEW YORK, NY September 12, 2000 Barnes & Noble, Inc., the nations largest bookseller, and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the premier organization in the fight against racism, anti-Semitism and bigotry, will announce this morning an unprecedented and highly ambitious joint campaign entitled, Close the Book on Hate. The purpose of this nationwide effort is to provide children and their parents, caregivers, teachers and civic leaders with the tools, resources and programs they need to better understand and help eliminate prejudice and discrimination in their communities. While the goal of Close the Book on Hate. is to gain respect for all types of differences, the campaign emphasizes fighting racism, anti-Semitism and homophobia.
Former Senator Bill Bradley, a longtime advocate of racial unity, is serving as the honorary chairman for Close the Book on Hate. . He will make appearances on behalf of the campaign today in New York, beginning at 10 a.m. at the Union Square Barnes & Noble (33 East 17th Street). On Thursday, September 14, Senator Bradley will be in Atlanta at the Cumberland Barnes & Noble (2952 Cobb Parkway).
"Despite the growth of the U.S. economy, advances in technology and our leadership of the free world, hate, racism and bigotry still invade our schools, homes and places of business," commented Senator Bill Bradley. "Now is the time for us to re-commit ourselves to embracing diversity and celebrating our differences. I applaud the work of Barnes & Noble and the Anti-Defamation League to give children and adults the tools they need to make this happen in their own ommunities and schools."
At the heart of the campaign is ADLs innovative new book, Hate Hurts, co-authored by Caryl Stern-LaRosa and Ellen Hofheimer Bettmann, and published by Scholastic Inc., the leading publisher of childrens books. Hate Hurts explores how to answer difficult questions frequently asked by young people, helps caregivers comfort children who are the victims of hate, and offers assistance when working with those who are the perpetrators of intolerance. Hate Hurts will be available for sale at Barnes & Noble stores and on its Web site, http://www.bn.com, as well as other retail and online bookstores.
Another campaign element is a special brochure that Barnes & Noble and ADL have produced, which features a recommended reading list of all the books included in the Close the Book on Hate. campaign. The brochure, entitled Close the Book on Hate: 101 Ways to Combat Prejudice, is available for free at all Barnes & Noble stores.
To help make a difference in communities and neighborhoods across the country, Barnes & Noble is teaming up with ADLs 30 local offices to hold special in-store educational programs and events with community leaders and local schools in September and October. During this time, each Barnes & Noble store will dedicate a special display table for works of fiction, non-fiction, photography and poetry that emphasize the importance of valuing diversity for both children and adults. As part of its continuing commitment to the program, all Barnes & Noble stores will have a permanent Close the Book on Hate. shelf in the "Parenting" section, starting in November.
For its part, Barnes & Noble.com has launched a Close the Book on Hate. boutique, which can be found in "Kids!" and the "Parenting" subject areas. The "Home" and "Bookstore" pages also link to the boutique. The site will feature an interview with Caryl Stern-LaRosa, co-author of Hate Hurts, in "Parenting & Family," which will run from September 12 through 18. In addition, a Barnes & Noble University course, "Hate Hurts: How Children Learn and Unlearn Prejudice," developed by the ADL, will start enrolling online students on September 15. The site will also has links to ADLs and Scholastics (http://www.scholastic.com) Web sites.
"Prejudice is a vicious poison that affects all of us, particularly our children," said Leonard Riggio, chairman and chief executive officer of Barnes & Noble, Inc., and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL national director. "The only cure is to replace ignorance with knowledge. If bigots can teach people to hate, Barnes & Noble and the Anti-Defamation League can teach them not to hate. That is what this campaign is all about."
Mr. Riggio and Mr. Foxman added that, "through exposure to good books and discussion, children and their parents will better understand the richness and beauty of our multicultural society. Close the Book on Hate. will raise awareness of the profoundly personal and social consequences of prejudice, while promoting respect at home, in schools, and in our communities."
In addition to events at all Barnes & Noble stores nationwide, the campaign will concentrate on the following ten key markets in which both Barnes & Noble and ADL have a strong community presence: Atlanta, Georgia Los Angeles, California Boston, Massachusetts Miami, Florida Chicago, Illinois New York, New York Denver, Colorado Washington, D. C. Houston, Texas Westport, Connecticut About Barnes & Noble, Inc.
Barnes & Noble, Inc. (NYSE: BKS) operates 551 Barnes & Noble and 379 B. Dalton bookstores, and, with its acquisition of Babbages Etc. and Funco, Inc., is the nations largest operator of video game and entertainment software stores. Barnes & Noble stores stock an authoritative selection of book titles and provide access to more than one million titles. They offer books from more than 50,000 publisher imprints with an emphasis on small, independent publishers and university presses. Barnes & Noble is one of the worlds largest booksellers on the World Wide Web (http://www.bn.com), and thehttp://www.bn.com exclusive bookseller on America Online (Keyword: bn). Barnes & Noble.com has the largest standing inventory of any online bookseller. Barnes & Noble also publishes books under its own imprint for exclusive sale through its retail stores and Web site.
General financial information on Barnes & Noble, Inc. can be obtained via the Internet by visiting the companys investor relations Web site: http://www.shareholder.com/bks/.