Over 200 entertainment leaders urge Amazon and Barnes & Noble to drop the antisemitic title
More than 200 entertainment leaders, including famous stars, have urged Amazon and Barnes & Noble to stop selling an antisemitic title, warning executives that they are “profiting from hate”.
The book and movie “Hebrews to Negroes” recently saw a surge in purchases after it was promoted on social media by NBA star Keri Irving, which propelled it to Amazon bestseller lists and pressure from Jewish groups to remove the titles.
In an open letter to Jeff Bezos, James Daunt, and other leaders at Amazon and Barnes & Noble, the signatories noted that despite “private letters and public calls to withdraw the counterfeit book and movie” from their sites, “I have so far refused to be represented.”
“Your companies profit from hate,” charged the letter, published by the nonprofit entertainment industry organization Creative Community For Peace.
It warned that the headlines were “causing enormous harm to the Jewish community while spreading dangerous misinformation to an affected audience that may be vulnerable to campaign propaganda.”
“These works promote many anti-Semitic tropes and conspiracy theories that have no basis in reality, including fake Hitler quotes, false claims of Jewish power and control, that the Jewish people fabricated the Holocaust, and that the Jewish people are fake Jews.” .
“The allegations contained in these acts have led to the persecution and murder of millions of Jews over the centuries.”
Noting that in the United States “there are more hate crimes against Jews per capita than any other minority, and religion-based hate crimes against the Jewish people than any other religion,” she declared that “it is unacceptable to allow this kind of Incitement hatred on your platforms.”
As of Thursday, the titles are no longer available on the Barnes & Noble website.
In a statement, Creative Community For Peace said those who signed the letter were “among the first in the entertainment industry to publicly and collectively call for the film’s removal, with the hope of stamping out extremism and indoctrination in the future.”
Actresses Mila Kunis, Debra Messing and Mayim Bialik included in the letter. Sherry Lansing, former CEO of Paramount Pictures; Haim Saban, Chairman and CEO of Saban Capital Group; David Drayman of the band Troubled; and comedian Elisa Schlesinger.
In the statement, Ari Engel, Creative Community Director for Peace, said companies can “either continue to profit from hate and anti-Semitism, while turning a blind eye to the concerns of the Jewish community, or they can choose to be an ally, and stand on the right side of Date “.
“Companies do not need to help facilitate the spread of dangerous conspiracy theories that threaten the Jewish community,” he said. “We urge them to take the prudent and responsible steps necessary to remove this content.”
Pressure is mounting on Amazon to stop selling “Hebrews to Negroes,” which centers on the idea that the true descendants of ancient Israelites are in modern times African Americans and that today’s Jews claim to be a breed. It also contains a series of other anti-Semitic claims, including Holocaust denial and the false claim that Jews controlled the American slave trade.
On Monday, the American Jewish Committee asked Amazon to address the issue by removing the book and film.
Last week, the Anti-Defamation League sent a letter to Amazon on behalf of itself and Irving’s team, the Brooklyn Nets, calling on the company to either remove the “strongly anti-Semitic book and related video” or label them with a note about their attack. Content.
A little over a week ago, Irving posted a link to an Amazon page for a documentary called “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America” based on the book of the same name.
The film has since become a bestseller, topping all documentaries on Amazon Video. On IMDb, the popular movie database owned by Amazon, the movie now has 370 reviews. A screenshot of the title page from February shows it only had eight reviews at the time.
Irving dismissed the criticism he made after posting a link to the film and remained defiant after being suspended from the Nets for his refusal to say he had no anti-Semitic views. In the end, however, he apologized for publishing the film, saying he was “aware of the negative impact of my position on the Jewish community and I take responsibility.”
As long as the film remains on Amazon, the company continues to charge half of the purchase price and distribute the other half to the director. Some are asking the company to donate its book and film proceeds to groups fighting the spread of hate.
Amazon’s guidelines for filmmakers who distribute movies on the company’s platform state that “all titles are subject to manual and automated reviews,” which are meant to detect copyright violations or sexually explicit content as well as “defamatory comments, hate speech, or threats specifically targeting any group.” or singly.”
The company’s policy for booksellers states that Amazon can remove “offensive” content. It also says it will allow a wide range of viewpoints to be broadcast.
“As a bookseller, we believe that providing access to the written word is important, including content that may be considered objectionable,” the policy says.
In January, Barnes & Noble removed “The Protocols of the Governor of Zion” from its website in the wake of a social media protest against the notoriously fictional description of a Jewish plan to take over the world.
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