June 2nd, 2009
(LA Ex) – The Anti-Defamation League Director for the Plains States Alan Potash, has just declared war against our First Amendment right to freedom of speech. Potash made the following statement, which was published in the May 26 edition of The Omaha World Herald.
“Dangers of hate,” was right to point out that freedom of speech does not extend to racist groups, nor give their supporters the right to threaten and intimidate others or commit acts of violence.
But when bigots step over the line, it is vital that law enforcement and the courts have the proper tools to respond effectively.
This is why Congress should move expeditiously to approve the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevent Act – legislation that would add protection for all citizens from violent acts of intolerance.
The bill, which was approved in the House last month, would equip local law enforcement officials with tools, training and resources to investigate and prosecute bias-motivated crimes.
Like acts of terrorism, hate crimes can hurt more than the individual victim. They can instill fear and insecurity within an entire community.”
The Hate Crimes Prevention Act recently passed the Congress and is now on its way to the Senate, where it is likely to pass and signed by President Obama. The Anti-Defamation League has been at the forefront of promoting hate crime legislation, and openly advocates for their model anti-hate law. In 1988 the ADL gave out an award to law student Joseph Ribikoff for writing a proposed hate crime bill that would criminalize hate speech against gays and minorities.
On the ADL’s website they state their mission is “to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all.” That sounds fair enough but the organization has gone out of its way to vilify anyone who disagrees with their political agenda. On a number of occasions as I have pointed out they have opposed the right to freedom of speech. The ADL has smeared as anti-semites, Professor John Mearsheimer for his book critical of the Israeli Lobby and former President Jimmy Carter for his book “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid”. The ADL has also supported Europe and Canada’s policies on prosecuting what their governments deem as hate speech. While they have aligned themselves with the Neoconservatives on the issue of Israel they have also joined with leftist organizations such as the Southern Poverty Center by smearing CNN’s Lou Dobbs as well as Pat Buchanan for their views on immigration as racist while ignoring the fact that Israel’s immigration policy makes Dobb’s and Buchanan’s look liberal in comparison.
The ADL claims to be fighting the defamation of the Jewish people but they are doing a grave disservice to Jewish Americans who believe in liberty and freedom of speech by claiming to advocate on their behalf. The ADL has also tried to stifle dissent within the Jewish community such as in the cases of Tony Judt and Norman Finkelstein.