“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

The Guardian, Moderation and Anti-Jewish Racism.

with 4 comments

I can see that when a final reckoning on the CiF project at the Guardian is conducted that it won’t be too pretty.

Certainly, the Guardian’s CiF has stimulated debate, but what safeguards have been put in place to avoid it being used to foster racism and bigotry.

Latterly the Guardian introduced some moderation but in the more contentious threads many racist remarks still slip through.

The racist remarks that slip through a notable for one particular reason, they are normally aimed at only one social and ethnic minority, Jews.

Other bigoted comments which attack gays, blacks, the Roma, or even Muslims, etc are picked up with great speed and deleted before you could say “worried liberal”.

But it would be a fairly easy task to implement a careful moderation scheme which also manages the outpouring of anti-Jewish racism. Sadly, the Guardian and its staff are seemingly incapable of doing that relatively simple task.

I can’t determine if it is a lack of will, an indifference, a deficit in training or just plain laziness which means the Guardian forums on anything remotely connected to Israel often become a hotbed of barely concealed anti-Jewish racism.

This is surely surprising, as the Guardian, being Britain’s only liberal daily newspaper should be in the forefront of the opposition to anti-Jewish racism, but as we saw when it pushed Churchill’s nasty racist play, Seven Jewish Children, it is clearly losing its moral compass, or at least playing to the lowest common denominator. I’m not sure which.

Either way it is not an edifying sight, still it reminds me of what Dave Rich wrote:

“It is often said, not least by CST, that criticism of Israel is perfectly legitimate, just as it is of any other state. Equally, though, people who want to criticise or campaign against Israel should exercise care that their activities do not invoke or allude to traditional antisemitic imagery or language.

Written by modernityblog

10/07/2009 at 18:53

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , , ,

4 Responses

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  1. Modesty. Nice blog. I don’t believe that it is a lack of will that causes moderators not to delete anti-Jewish or anti-Israeli remarks. I believe that it is because they see nothing wrong in them.


    10/07/2009 at 19:58

  2. Modernity,

    I agree with Jubilation1 – you are too generous to Comment Is Free. I find it to be consistently nauseating in its one-sidedness vis-a-vis Israel/Palestine, Iran, and any number of other issues I care about.


    10/07/2009 at 21:49

  3. […] Modernity blog nails The Guardian on antisemitism […]

  4. […] 29, 2009 9:02 pm Overt racism in the British broadsheet media is a comparatively modern phenomenon, but whatever they lacked in the past they have more than made up in the […]

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