To: Mark Zuckerberg

Call on Facebook to remove "Jewish Ritual Murder" page

A Facebook Page that promotes the myth of the blood libel by purporting to tell the so-called "truth" about Jewish practices of ritual murder, has been declared to not constitute "hate speech" by Facebook. It was taken down, but has since been returned. This page cannot be allowed to remain as it promotes a message that has been used throughout history--and is used today--to justify horrific violence against Jews.

Why is this important?

I am a medieval historian (PhD in Medieval Studies). I have studied at length the blood libel leveled against Jews during the Middle Ages. The blood libel alleged--with absolutely no basis in fact--that Jews were responsible for (among other things) murdering Christian children and using their blood for ritual purposes such as unleavened bread, and that Jews were solely to blame for the execution of Jesus of Nazareth. The claims of the blood libel have been used from the Middle Ages and on into today's world to perpetuate the notion that it is acceptable to perpetrate horrific acts of discrimination, violence, and slaughter upon Jews and Jewish communities. Any Facebook page that describes these false practices of ritual murder is implicitly encouraging similar activities even if it never says so outright.

Many of my colleagues and I have already contacted Facebook, reporting the page as encouraging discrimination and violence against Jews through the promulgation of a myth that has been repeatedly proven utterly false. Though the page was taken down, 24 hours later it was restored and messages were sent to us saying that the site is NOT seen as discriminatory or encouraging hate speech .

If Facebook is to be the social force that it pretends to be in its mission statement, it must live up to its own codes of what constitutes "hate speech". We, the undersigned, demand therefore that the website "Jewish Ritual Murder (" be permanently removed and that Facebook reassess its policies concerning what constitutes "hate speech".