YouTube bans pro-Israel video as “hate speech”

Imagine if a Jew told a true story about how he was brought up by his religious parents and his rabbis to hate Muslims and Palestinians, and then—after reading about the conflict between Israel and Palestine, and visiting Palestine—changed his mind and discovered that Muslims (and the country of Palestine) weren’t so bad after all.  That would be good, right? Or at least something one could put on YouTube without fear?

Now imagine the opposite: a Muslim brought up by his parents and imams hating Jews and Israel, but who changed his mind after some reading and a visit to Israel. What would be the fate of such a video?

Yep, you guessed it. The former would be okay, but the latter would be deemed HATE SPEECH. And so deemed by both Muslims and Regressive Leftists.

And so YouTube deemed this video from Prager University, which was taken down after complaints of hate speech. Regardless of what you think of Israel and Palestine, watch the story of Kasim Hafeez, a British-born Muslim. (And yes, I know that Prager University is right-wing and has its problems. And you don’t even have to believe this story (though Hafeez’s story is also on Wikipedia with references): the point is how such stories are treated by places like YouTube.)

After Prager put up a petition, the video was reinstated, though it’s still said be “restrictable” by parents and schools (I don’t know how that’s done). The petition also lists 18 other Prager videos that are restricted; these are, of course, pushing a right-wing agenda or are anti-Islam.

I quote my friend Malgorzata, who sent me the link:

Of course, it was “hate speech” according to the definition of “Social Justice Warriors” and Islamists. Anything bad about Muslims, no matter whether it’s true or not, is “hate speech”. If you say that Muhammed consummated his marriage with a 9-year-old girl it’s hate speech. It may be in the Qur’an, but you are not allowed to say it because somebody might think something unflattering about the Prophet and about Islam. And that is “Islamophobia”.

Whatever you think about the video above, under what definition of “hate speech” does it fall?


  1. Heather Hastie
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    Personally, I do not see how this man, simply expressing his opinion and experience, has any of the hallmarks of hate speech. That it has been deemed so seems bizarre to me, and can only be the result of a mind blinded by prejudice.

  2. rickflick
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    The video seems fine to me. A persons experience of becoming more broadminded and liberal. Could it be that Youtube received a protest from some Islamists and noted the film was from Prager and reflexively hit the delete key?

    • steve
      Posted December 7, 2016 at 4:11 am | Permalink


  3. Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Maybe he ate some yogurt, and as we learned a few days ago, yogurt is racist and misogynistic! Oh never mind. I am all too confused by what the world has become. Facts and evidence no longer have any meaning.

  4. Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:33 am | Permalink

    As was explained to me recently by an SJW acquaintance, one way to tell if something is hate speech is to investigate whether the source is “known to be racist”, irrespective of the speech’s content. And one way to know if a source is racist is that they’ve been accused of hate speech…

  5. Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    It appears to be back up.

    • Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      Never mind, you said that! I went straight to a search for the video. Should have read more carefully!

  6. eric
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    Whatever you think about the video above, under what definition of “hate speech” does it fall?

    Can’t watch videos at the moment, but AIUI its pretty common in honor cultures to interpret the political as personal. Thus the reasoning would be that this Muslim claiming his parents and Imams taught him to hate Jews, is by extension insulting every Muslim parent and Imam as well as the culture as a whole.

    That sort of reasoning is (IMO) bullflop, but that’s my guess for how they arrive at the hate speech claim.

    Though it would be interesting to follow-up with the objectors to ask what they think Islam does teach about Jews. If saying it teaches they are bad is hate speech, then does that mean Islam says they are good? I imagine some significant fraction of the objectors wouldn’t want to publicly support that statement, even though you kind of have to imply it for the accusation to make any sense at all.

  7. Malgorzata
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:50 am | Permalink


    • Zado
      Posted December 6, 2016 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

      Widespread antisemitic indoctrination among Muslim communities is a touchy subject for leftists. Partly because it’s so widespread, but mainly because it involves the kinds of outlandish conspiracy theories that only antisemitism can conjure. For those overly concerned with “narratives,” it’s very difficult to whitewash the fact that majorities of Muslims in Middle Eastern countries don’t believe that Arabs carried out the 9/11 attacks. Two guesses as to who they think did…

      • Posted December 6, 2016 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

        I once read an article summarizing polls about Muslim attitudes to 9/11 and other Islamist terror acts. The majority of Muslims condemned the acts but denied the Muslim affiliation of the perpetrators. Even when the Taliban took over some districts and proudly announced on local TV that they had done this or that atrocity, the audience still found ways to explain it away.

    • Zado
      Posted December 6, 2016 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      Whoops! Meant that to be an independent comment.

      That MEMRI report is interesting though: “At the final station, the children, who are blindfolded, are asked to throw a ball at a puzzle of an Israeli flag and knock it down, and then put together a puzzle of the Iranian flag.”

      Aww, how cute!

      • somer
        Posted December 6, 2016 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

        Problem solving and training for intellectual subtlety perhaps?

  8. Posted December 6, 2016 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    If that’s hate speech, I’m a pink elephant.

  9. Kevin
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Do not hurt anyone’s feelings. This is the business model of the internet. Problem is the internet mostly serves people whose feelings are so easily offended because they lack critical thinking skills.

    • Posted December 6, 2016 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

      “Problem is the internet mostly serves people whose feelings are so easily offended because they lack critical thinking skills.”

      Yeah you constantly hear theists, and their allies complaining about atheists ridiculing religious belief, but you never hear atheists complaining about theists ridiculing them for their lack of belief. If you’re secure in your belief because it’s well considered, and based on evidence why would it bother you if people made fun of it?

    • Posted December 6, 2016 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

      I have a feeling 🙂 that if Jews start complaining that some video hurts their feelings, YouTube wouldn’t be so cooperative.

  10. ToddP
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, is it hate speech?

    • Craw
      Posted December 6, 2016 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      Brilliant. Consider it stolen.

  11. Posted December 6, 2016 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    The only hate speech in that video is that which he repudiates.

    Same for me, to a lesser degree. My (almost entirely uninformed) negative view of Israel was broken down by actually going there. I lived there for several months and saw a successful, largely secular (with some bizarre and some disgraceful exceptions) peace-loving society. I had deliberately avoided finding out more about the history before I went, because I didn’t want to get into arguments about the history of war-mongering aggression I assumed they must have.

    Ultimately, the book that probably cleared up the issues for me the most was Benny Morris’s Righteous Victims — general history of Israel/Palestine.

    A couple of close friends wound up boycotting me for my implicit support of “the murder of innocent women and children”, and started screaming at me that I shouldn’t complain if the Arabs “find their own final solution”. It’s weird and shocking watching former friends suddenly transform themselves into rabid blood-lusting lunatics.

    • Posted December 7, 2016 at 8:24 am | Permalink

      It is incredible how people believe in what they want to believe. They will not allow little things like facts or evidence to get in the way. The problem is so pervasive today because of the internet and the ability to find sites where like-minded people simply reinforce their beliefs. They simply refuse to listen or at least give any credibility to opposing viewpoints. In politics it has gotten way out of control and any suggestion of compromise is met with derision and ridicule.

  12. Yaron
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    It’s entirely possible that the video was flagged as hate speech by people who didn’t even watch it, and that they were somewhat justified in doing so.

    Because, well, the title of the video is “Born to Hate Jews”, and the static image shown before playing the video again includes “Born to Hate Jews” in a large font, together with a picture of a men wearing a keffiyeh standing in front of a class against a whiteboard that has a crossed-out start of david on it.

    Which gives a very strong first impression that this is going to be either a very anti-Semitic video, or a very anti Arab/Muslim video harping on how they all hate Jews or Israel.

    After watching the video, yes, it’s not hate speech at all. But from a first impression I’m, again, not at all surprised if many people would naturally assume that it is.

  13. Sarah
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Bizarre! It’s the opposite of hate speech! Lewis Carroll lives!

  14. Dan
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Any self-respecting SJW would never have anything positive to say about Israel or condemn Muslim antisemitism. Just look at Amnesty International.

  15. Posted December 6, 2016 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    That wasn’t bad. But unfortunately then I accidentally watched this horse doody.

    In case links aren’t allowed it is Dennis Prager whining about people and businesses who say Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas. I am unfamiliar with his commentary but this was incredibly stupid. If any of his other commentary is even half that dumb he isn’t worth listening to.

  16. dd
    Posted December 6, 2016 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

    Here’s a good example of why Breitbart is gaining credibility and why it’s good to read….

    (And I’ve been reading the NYTimes since I was a teenager…and I am now far, far from those years.)

    • Nirven
      Posted December 7, 2016 at 3:03 am | Permalink

      Many other news sources reported the same. And it is true to some extent, the “state media” (called ARD, and not controlled by the state) did not report it in their news segment.

      The problem is, they do not generally report about rape/murder cases. They did the same here, i.e. not reporting about it.
      Why should this case have been reported, while they do not do so for others?

      • Posted December 7, 2016 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

        This case has political implications.

  17. madscientist
    Posted December 7, 2016 at 1:36 am | Permalink

    Oh Dog, this is why there’s so little hope of peace in a Palestinian state – the people on one side who would promote peace are reviled and castigated by their own people.

  18. Diane G.
    Posted December 7, 2016 at 1:55 am | Permalink


  19. Petu W.
    Posted December 7, 2016 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Just a minor point:
    Old testament is not a history book. It is questionable whether there was an ethnic group which could be called “jews” 4 000 years ago. Judaism was born much later; it could be argued that it was invented by Deutero-Isaiah.

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