Sunday, December 19, 2010

Small Consolation When Fighting Online: At Least it Wasn't Over Youtube

There are a lot of stupid things people do to procrastinate. Over the past week or so, as I've been avoiding writing papers and studying for final exams, I found a seriously disturbing website that ended up taking a lot of my time. The site was hosted by some Nation of Islam guys and it was basically about how Jews were responsible for the plight of the black person in America. I was incredibly steamed up, and I know, I know that it's never a good idea to get into a fight with people on the internet, but I fell for it and I did it anyway. I sent the guy an email in which I corrected a lot of his incorrect quotations (he, or the guy who sent him some quotes from Guide for the Perplexed, literally took out lines and words), objected to his comparison of Maimonides to Hitler (come on!), and some other stuff.

He wrote back, I wrote back, didn't go well. Didn't go well at all. If I can extract some of my favorite lines from his latest email, they would include:

1. "Believe me, it is only because we intend to use this to show our students what clowns you are that we even responded."
2. "You said Hitler killed millions. I say, he did not kill a single human being, except himself by suicide."
3. "I do not want to go with you to "Auschwitz, Treblinka, Berkanau". Last time you "chosen people" asked us to go with you on an overseas trip with you cost 100 million lives. No thanks."
And my favorite...
4. "You Stern are a racist. A blind, deaf, and really dumb racist--just above the level of the apes--like Maimonides. Only he was slightly smarter."

...I literally don't know what to say about this. I regret I got involved with it in the first place, to tell you the truth, but I just find it so difficult to believe that people like this actually exist. I already said I wouldn't respond to this last one, so I'm not going to, but it frightens me that this guy has "students." (Maybe it's like Glenn Beck's university?) I need to delete these emails so I stop looking at them every time I open my mailbox.



  2. god it's like the time i spammed iwish with nasty things and they all got mad at me.

    it's exactly like that.

  3. Yeah, that's pretty upsetting. Definitely not worth responding. Just those excerpts make me nauseous. And Adi's analogy is, as always, spot on.

  4. Yup. just delete the comments and try to move on. You can't change everyone's mind. He feels the need to believe what he beleives.

  5. Yeah, what Susie said. I kind of wish you hadn't posted this--I mean, I know that there are many people who think this way, but every time I see things like this it makes me sick.

  6. It's definitely frustrating to keep these thoughts to ourselves when we see people that are so divorced from reality. But clearly these individuals are not rational and even if you give him the best reasoning and make the best possible argument, they are never going to see your side of it. When it comes to those people, you just have to try your best to ignore it, as difficult as it might be. You have to hope that the rational individuals in the world outnumber those psychos.

  7. Speaking of fighting on youtube...reminds me of Zahava's Israel video and it's over 15,000 hits (what the heck??) and ALL of its angry, angry comments.

  8. I don't remember angry comments on Zahava's video.