The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

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Last-Modified: 0000/11/16

Punishing weird ideas can backfire

To see how our over-bossy complaints industry can cause more harm than 
good, check the Executive Council of Australian Jewry's bid to close 
down the web site of Dr. Frederick Toben.

ECAJ wants the Federal Court to punish Dr Toben for refusing to obey the Human 
Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, which has condemned him for
publishing anti-Semitic material and told him to stop.

It is doing the same with Launceston zealot Olga Scully, who stuffs
letterboxes with similar rubbish, and is also ignoring HREOC.

True, Dr Toben is a worry. His Adelaide Institute website claims the
Holocaust is a hoax, and last year he dared German authorities to jail him
for defying laws banning Holocaust denial. They did.

But what has the campaign against him achieved?

Since 1997, he has been mentioned in 18 Melbourne newspaper reports -- and
each time either because of his jailing or Jewish bids to get the law
to shut him up.

His "martyrdom" just gives him free publicity, as one newspaper admitted by
introducing a feature on him like this: "Holocaust denier Frederick
Toben was jailed in Germany this week. Katherin Towers reports on the
organisation he heads."

On Friday, ECAJ's announcement that it would take Dr Toben to court inspired
one newspaper to publicse his website, saying it had pictures of
Auschwitz with captions claiming: "The four alleged gas-induction holes
do not exist! No holes -- no Holocaust!" He would have loved it.

Same story with Ms Scully. All 12 mentions of her in Hobart's 
'Mercury" and 'Sunday Tasmanian' since 1996 came as a result of attempts
to silence her or Dr Toben.

Worse, Dr Toben and Ms Scully now pose as victims of a Jewish bid to deny
them free speech, and there's sadly just enough truth in that to make
them a real menace.

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