Do words of hate matter? It’s just words or is it sinister?

Home Forums Controversial Topics Do words of hate matter? It’s just words or is it sinister?

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    We hear and see people using anti-Semitic words, expressions of hate, name calling. Should we get upset or simply ignore it? Does antisemitic words or hate speak lead to any real impact?

    Moreso, does it matter if the speaker of hate is a goy or if it is a fellow yid speaking words of hate against other yidden (that might dress or act differently than the speaker)? Do such words of hate lead to real impact?

    A goy uses hateful words to demean a Yid, or a Yid uses hateful words to demean other Yidden, does it matter or is it just words?

    What about blogs or newspapers that publish such hateful speech – are they just reporting opinions of others or are they partners in the hate?

    What if the publishers or blogs are themselves Jewish… does it become ok?


    If it is a goy, ignore him. That’s been the Jewish way ever since we’ve been in galus, as led by the Gedolei Yisroel thoroughout galus.

    If it is a Yid, Kol Yisroel Areivim Zeh L’zeh. We should reprimand him.


    There are quite a few questions there, but I will try to answer. I think there needs to be a clear distinction between hateful speech and advocating for violence. Calling a Jew cheap, is not advocating for violence. Saying “gas all the Jews” is and the two are not the same.

    Are they just words? Yes. Do they matter? Yes. Hateful speech against another new or to a non-Jew creates a toxic environment. Reporting today has become more about the optics it has versus the accuracy of the report, and if a paper is attempting to pass of opinion and reporting, they are partners in the deed.

    All too often, the nastiest bits of opinion are from other Jews. But most of those Jews are ethnically Jews not morally Jews. They care nothing for Jewish values and their Judaism is limited to bagels and lox and going to see “Fiddler on the Roof” in Yiddish. They are not representative of the Jewish opinion, and in this context would be the same as a non-Jew.


    Hateful speech is wrong. Daas Torah is ok. If someone points out that talking during chazaras hashatz is gadol avono mineso and you like talking during chazaras hashatz, that’s not hate.


    Bigotry, name-calling or any other expressions of hatred, even simple rudeness, are never okay and should be remonstrated against whenever they are encountered (use common sense). I do, however, have a problem with criminalizing thought. A person should be free to think whatever they want. They can hate Jews, Blacks, Muslims, left-handed people, etc as much as they want. So-called “hate speech”, as long as it’s a general statement and not specifically inciting (I.E. “Let’s string ’em up!”) is actually protected speech under the First Amendment, however loathsome it may be, but a specific insult or act of bigotry directed at an individual or group is an assault that needs to be countered by whatever means at their disposal.


    The First Amendment is, decidedly, a non-Jewish value. Judaism officially has harsh denouncing of various specific groups and nationalities.

    Reb Eliezer

    RG, Maybe you should preach to yourself about the words you use by being disrespectful towards participants in CR.


    All words have a psychological impact on a person, as it will take up thinking space that could have been used more productively


    Joey, whether or not the First Amendment is a “Jewish Value”, it is the law of the land in which we find ourselves. Frankly, the First amendment is a good idea in general as the same law that permits hateful speech protects us, our speech and religious practice. Joey should be especially grateful for the First Amendment as it also protects foolish and pointless speech.

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