Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt called out Elon Musk on Tuesday night, saying it was “profoundly disturbing” that the Twitter/X owner was boosting the antisemitic #BanTheADL campaign while simultaneously contemplating a “frivolous lawsuit” against the civil rights group.
Greenblatt’s direct response to Musk comes after the “free speech absolutist” spent the past few days pondering whether to boot the ADL from the site formerly known as Twitter, blaming the organization for advertisers fleeing his struggling social media platform, and then threatening to sue the Jewish civil liberties group for defamation.
“To clear our platform’s name on the matter of anti-Semitism, it looks like we have no choice but to file a defamation lawsuit against the Anti-Defamation League… oh the irony!” Musk wrote on Monday.
Musk, meanwhile, has also continued to actively engage with the hard-right pundits and provocateurs who initially launched the campaign to ban the organization from X, including an antisemitic YouTuber who is associated with white nationalists Nick Fuentes and Richard Spencer.
“It is profoundly disturbing that Elon Musk spent the weekend engaging with a highly toxic, antisemitic campaign on his platform–a campaign started by an unrepentant bigot that then was heavily promoted by individuals such as white supremacist Nick Fuentes, Christian nationalist Andrew Torba, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and others,” Greenblatt said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “Finally, we saw the campaign manifest in the real world when masked men marched in Florida on Saturday brazenly waving flags adorned with swastikas and chanting ‘Ban the ADL.’”
Over the weekend, dozens of Nazi-saluting white supremacists marched through the streets of Orlando, Florida, complete with flags emblazoned with swastikas. A separate group showed up at the entrance of Disney World with pro-Hitler signs and Nazi paraphernalia.
Greenblatt added that the ADL’s concern goes further than Musk’s threatened litigation, pointing to the rise of antisemitic attacks across the United States by linking to a map that details the nearly 4,000 incidents of harassment, violence and vandalism that occurred last year.
“But to be clear, the real issue is neither ADL nor the threat of a frivolous lawsuit,” he wrote in his statement. “This urgent matter is the safety of the Jewish people in the face of increasing, intensifying antisemitism. Musk is engaging with and elevating these antisemites at a time when ADL is tracking a surge of bomb threats and swatting attacks of synagogues and Jewish institutions, dramatic levels of antisemitic propaganda being littered throughout Jewish and non-Jewish residential communities, and extremists marching openly through the streets in Nazi gear. All of this is happening in a context of the highest number of antisemitic incidents that ADL has tracked in more than 40 years–and just two weeks away from the Jewish holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.”
Greenblatt concluded: “And so, this behavior is not just alarming nor reckless. It is flat out dangerous and deeply irresponsible. We need responsible leaders to lead, to stop inflaming hatred and to step back from the brink before it’s too late.”
Twitter sued the Center for Countering Digital Hate in July, claiming the non-profit group that studies misinformation on social media was “actively working to prevent free expression” by reporting the dramatic rise in hate speech on the platform under Musk’s stewardship. Musk added that the CCDH was trying to hurt his site’s advertising business, which has plummeted since Musk purchased Twitter over concerns with content moderation.
The Tesla CEO has since taken issue with the ADL for similarly reporting that there’s been “both an increase in antisemitic content on the platform and a decrease in the moderation of antisemitic posts,” claiming that the group’s claims are responsible for the loss of at least half of Twitter’s value.
A representative for Twitter/X did not respond to a request for comment.
#ADL #Blasts #Elon #Musks #Profoundly #Disturbing #Behavior #Lawsuit #Threats