Is the Gab platform anti-Semitic?
Is the Gab social media platform anti-Semitic?
Platforms are value neutral.
The better question is whether or not anti-Semitism is prevalent on Gab. While I can't say whether or not it is prevalent since I don't know the number of accounts on Gab and the number espousing outright hatred of the Jewish people, I can tell you this: it is highly infected with hatred.
I left Facebook and pointed people to Gab.
My siblings created an account there (but don't seem to use it much, thankfully).
Gab is a well-designed social media platform that continues to improve in speed and functionality. It allows free speech without restraint (exceptions including child porn, among other things, which is a far step above Twitter). There are some very good things about it. If you're a Christian conservative, you'll never have as good a "pride" month as you will on Gab.
Gab is like lifting the rock to see what's underneath, like on early reddit, 4chan, or 8chan.
If you weren't aware of what kind of people were out there saying what kind of things, Gab makes it public and easily accessible. It's kind of like how the advent of the internet made nasty content more accessible to more people; Gab has done the same to some of the most hateful, satan-fueled evil ideology. You don't have to go looking for it. You simply stumble on it constantly, even if you're actively blocking people.
And since, as of late, the founder of Gab (Andrew Torba) has been pushing anti-Semitic content and making it unavoidable because his stuff pops up in the "what's hot" feed, I wanted to see how deep that went on the network. Was this guy just a one-off? Or was there more?
|See more about this post here.|
I go comment spelunking now and then to get a better idea of what people are thinking. It's a super ugly business and I don't recommend it at all.
I did it a lot during the pipeline protest (and gathered a lot of information for my book). I did it at the start of the pandemic to see if the messaging about people who didn't wear masks were murderers and uncaring was taking root (it was and did). And so, I thought I'd do it on Gab regarding the bizarre anti-Semitism I kept seeing.
Wow, people, you would not believe what came through my notifications. Pure verbal sewage of the most vile hate I've seen in a long time.
The Characteristics Of Gab Anti-Semites
This is not a complete list, mind you, because some of them were just...out there.
I would like to make a video out of the screenshots someday, but for now I'll just share a few of the more benign ones with a few observations on my interaction with those who hate the Jews on the Gab platform.
There is only a vague Jewish cabal. There are no individual Jewish people.
It's just this faceless caricature of a people group that's lumped together.
Were some Jews Marxists? Then ALL Jews are Marxist. Have some Jews manipulated the government? Then ALL Jews are manipulating the government. Are many of the globalists Jews? Then ALL Jews are evil globalists. (No word nor concern on other people groups who do bad things.)
They just lump them all in a group and if they can find one person who did something bad who was Jewish, they show it as proof that the Jewish people are evil. Torba recently made and shared a list of leading questions (who runs Hollywood? who runs finance? who runs whatever else? Is it the Muslim? The Christian?) clearly indicating he only sees Jewish people as a faceless mob.
They see them as Jews first, human beings second.
If you don't call out the fact that a person is Jewish when criticizing policies you don't agree with, for example, you're showing you're afraid to call out the Jewish cabal.
It's very odd.
Don't like Jared Kushner's influence on President Trump? (Which I don't.) Unless you refer to him as Jew Jared Kushner, you're just a puppet!
These folks apparently have zero capacity to understand that some people don't think about the demographic or label of a person first.
It's Ben Carson, not black Ben Carson. It's Julie Neidlinger, not white Julie Neidlinger.
The whole thing is bizarre. You must play by their rules and if you aren't a person identifying people by ethnicity or religion, you're afraid/enabling the Jewish cabal.
In this way, they are like those pushing CRT who see skin color and intersectionality first, the person second. It was all Hitler, throw them in the oven, kill/defeat/remove the Jew and nothing else.
They could not differentiate between a political organization having connections to Israel, and the individual Jewish people. Don't like AIPAC? Fair enough. But tell me why that means your Auschwitz oven meme has any bearing on anything.
I surely would not like someone to see me in light of our current Biden regime. The government isn't the people. The organizations aren't the people. The powerful aren't the people. You have to care about actual people, not vague groups.
2. Lack Of Originality
They regurgitated the exact same content.
In fact, when I asked one if they had a warehouse of the stuff, he conveniently provided me with two links to groups in which the sole purpose is creating and sharing anti-Jewish memes. I clicked on one link, and the first graphic was completely obscene. So they have their dank memes, and then they have their digital tracts containing stock research that the initiated must share, I guess.
|You can't even throw Hitler as an insult at them, because they actually think he was great or deny the Holocaust actually happened.|
The same memes, the same images, the same prooftexts from the Bible, the same arguments, the same insults, the same threats. Yawn.
Even their non-Jewish specific insults were unoriginal.
|Pretty typical stuff for most women who stumble into trolls.|
Weirdly, a lot of them starting insisting that because of my stance, I was Jewish, a hidden Jew, Ashkenazi Jew, and whatever else. I'm not, based on the genealogical research my family has done, but I wouldn't care if I was. Seriously, who cares?!
Half the people throwing insults at me probably have some Jewish blood in them, kind of like how white supremacist Craig Cobb had his DNA tested and found some African blood in him.
There was also the usual "women be quiet, women can't interpret scripture, you're a cunt retard you idiot someone should shut you up you're a fat ugly idiot dummy head any woman who disagrees with a man is a bitter hag go back to the kitchen and let the men talk whatever blah blah etc. and so forth" insults that I've become used to over the years. At least the pipeline protesters used Lakota words and made things interesting.
|I'm not sure how holding my own in a discussion on social media was me trying to be a man. I can fly an airplane though. Uh oh.|
|Meh. I'm Gen-X. Whatevs.|
To be fair, these are the things anonymous accounts throw at you for any number of arguments because it's just what people do when they're anonymous. That behavior isn't unique to these folks, nor did anything they threw at me have any particular originality.
In a way, it's part of dehumanizing someone else.
You make fun of how they look, who they are, and assign low value to them, their ideas, and their words. Pretty basic.
3. Biblical Illiteracy
There's some strange use of the Bible happening on Gab by these folks.
They quote the same few verses from the New Testament (which is what Torba did above) while simultaneously crowing "don't you know what Jesus said about the Jews" all to reveal a complete lack of Biblical literacy. The context of the verses, the whole of the New Testament, and the prophecy of both the Old and New Testament is never mentioned.
|More on this post here.|
Let's not forget all kinds of weird theology has infected them.
|It's tough to ascertain that Jesus was Jewish from reading the Bible, for sure, but my feminine hysterias managed to subside long enough to grasp it.|
Some were saying protestant Christianity was heretical. Others were grabbing onto Calvin and Luther and church tradition (instead of the Bible) as who to look to. There was some KJV only-ism, standard replacement theology, kingdom now, Jesus will defeat the Jews (?), Jesus wasn't a Jew, there are the Israelites and there are the Judea-Jews Jewry...the list goes on.
|Half the name is right.|
Their pastors, if they go to church at all, are doing a poor job preaching the Bible. I'll be pretty blunt, and state, as I did in one response, that if you think you've gotten the winning verbal riposte with "what did Jesus say about the Jews" you are:
- A red-letter Christian, and deny the inspired inerrancy of the complete Word of God.
- Unaware of John 1:1 which states that Jesus is the Word, and that the entire Bible, being the Word, is what Jesus said.
- Have not really read Romans and Hebrews, for starters.
You know where I place a lot of this anti-Semitic blame?
At the door of John Calvin, and today's new breed of Reformed, which is apparently attractive to the millennial bearded beer bro. Its growth and spread in American Christianity correlates with increasing anti-Semitism and anti-Israel sentiment in the American church.
Not all Calvinists/Reformed are like that, but it appears there's a certain vein of young man/woman who are attracted by the (brutal) law and order of Calvin. Like him, they believe through brute force and human will and power, they will save the world and turn it to Jesus and make it so Christ can come back forgetting that a) Jesus already saved the world, and b) things will get really bad and then he'll come back to reign as King and he doesn't need our help doing so. They place their trust and faith in tradition and Augustinian allegorical interpretations of the Bible instead of simply reading the Bible plainly and letting it say what it says. The hatred of the Jew comes from back then, and its poison is felt today. (Learn more.)
They are, ironically, more similar to the religious Jewish leaders of Jesus' day with all their rules and laws (the very people Jesus was actually referring to when he called Satan their father), yet seem to not see it.
4. Incredible Cowardice
There were three areas of cowardice:
- Cowardice in identity.
- Cowardice in hiding.
- Cowardice in concepts of free speech.
Cowardice in identity is seen in how 99.999% of the commenters are anonymous. (Interesting note: Despite this being a 'man up the feminists are destroying us' crowd, when real names seemed to be used, they were women.) They don't use their real names. They've flourished in the pool of creatures who have no identity, creatures whose spines dissipate.
Anonymity has its place if you are a true dissident or whistleblower. These were just regular angry men and women working in your office or at the water treatment plant or at your favorite Burger King, deluding themselves that the Jewish cabal was interested in what they had to say and would hunt them down.
Delusions of grandeur, methinks.
Oh, they could certainly lose their jobs in today's culture.
Yet I also speak plainly not only on social media, but in books and in blogging. I use my name. Always have. There have been repercussions, but there's more value in a word spoken with a name attached than not, for both myself and the reader. You refine thoughts, you learn about what ideas cost in real life, and you grow. Anonymity only worsens conversations for most people. Using your real name forces you to own what you're saying in real life.
Cowardice in hiding is in how quickly they blocked me once I let them know I was screenshotting what they were saying. At least five reposted something nasty about me as they blocked me. Gab has a lag on the blocking taking effect, so I got some funny screenshots from those brave souls. You know what scurries away when you shine a light on them? Bugs under a rock.
At least they saved me the time.
Cowardice in the concepts of free speech is in how they live in glass houses and yet use a stone thrower.
"What?! You can't handle free speech?!" quickly flips on its head when asking their name comes up. Free speech is easy when no one knows who you are.
It's easy to mock people who don't like evil and hateful speech against others as weak and unable to handle free speech, but turn that back on them and their refusal to be anything but anonymous, and suddenly the shoe is on the other foot.
|I think this is English, but I don't know. I think this is a man, but I don't know.|
To these folks, free speech's greatest quality was being hateful and a mocker. Not sharing health information censored by media or big tech. Not talking about election fraud. No, just memes and comments hating on Jews.
It's funny that many of these same conservatives who gripe about BLM and CRT and third-wave feminism creating perpetual victims are doing the same when it comes to Jewish people. They blame the Jewish people for everything.
Have a crappy life? Crappy job? Can't find love? Dog shat on your sofa? Someone somewhere on the internet doesn't agree with you?
It was the Jews.
No level of society is free from pointing a finger at the Jewish people. If it weren't so vile, it'd almost be comical in how they manage to make every single thing the fault of Jews.
The victimhood in the men was particularly strong.
They use the usual tropes about women, which a lot of bearded Calvin bros love to hold up as practically part of your salvation equation. Be more feminine! Be more like how I think a woman should be! But it's OK if I'm a sniveling coward behind a screen because the Jews! Then they say things that suggest women are stupid and weak and fit for silence in the kitchen, but when I call them out for their anonymity and unwillingness to own their words, they find all kinds of pansy excuses and attempt to paint their fear and spinelessness as manliness.
"My situation is unique! The Jews will come after me! I just need a bit more financial stability! Blah blah blah!"
"You're a bad lady and evil, but I'm a victim because the Jewish cabal might get me fired from McDonalds!"
I'm a freelancer. I have zero financial stability. I've already been doxed. But since I'm going to answer to God for my words and since I'm not in some bizarre RPG in which a cabal is after me specifically for the dank uninformative memes I post, I put my name on what I say. I know that as time winds down and chaos grows, there will be repercussions. I can't be dishonest and hide, regardless.
Their excuses are cowardice attempting to hide behind fake victimhood. And it's incredibly weak. They don't need a Jewish cabal to destroy them. Two LDS missionaries with ties askew at their front door could probably make them wet themselves.
6. Secret Knowledge
Gab is full of this, and not just in the anti-Semitic realm.
There's this idea that some people are "normies" (not awakened) while others are "based" (awakened, had their eyes opened). This is the problem of Gnosticism, in a way, because all people like the idea of being in on some secret knowledge. You get to exclude people, and our sin nature likes that. You can make fun of them for "not knowing." You can justify calling them dumb.
Oddly, the same group that freaks about the Masons is basically recreating their own non-systematized version where some people have seen the secret knowledge (usually an internet video on Bitchute or memes on a forum, but rarely a bunch of books), have accepted it as true, and are now more intelligent.
While it's true there's been a spate of people who, in 2020 and 2021 refused to research and find news regarding the pandemic and election that would show them what the mainstream media and big tech was restricting, the truth in that situation doesn't mean that all non-mainstream information is also true. Particularly in such a simplified and crude manner.
Conspiracy theories can be true, and they can be false. Believing every theory or none of them isn't a badge of honor.
Some of the people who responded I just couldn't understand. Maybe type assist got the best of them, I really don't know. Maybe to their own little circle jerk pals, it all made sense. No idea.
Seriously, there was a lot of weird stuff that didn't make any sense. I hope these folks aren't driving public transportation.
Who's The Real Enemy?
Satan, obviously. Ephesians 6:12 is a verse most Christians have memorized, I should think.
But secondly, their enemy would be themselves.
Seriously, all of this was going on late in the night while I was finishing and compiling a design for a client, overnight while I was sleeping, in the morning during personal Bible study, while I was doing virtual assistant work on the computer for a client, while I made lunch, while I went out and planted a second garden plot...they were still on Gab, commenting. The times I was on the computer, I'd pop in now and then and reply or do screengrabs as long as it didn't get in the way of my paid work. Some of the trolls, though, kept at it non-stop.
|I was away for 30 minutes late on day two. These are the notifications in that time.|
Do they not work? Have other hobbies? Are they so consumed by hate it's all they can do?
I have to hope some of them were at least at their job. But really, they're their own enemy. They say the Jew is the person holding them down, oppressing them, controlling them. I'd say it's their hateful obsession.
Frankly, I found the overall responses demonic. Here's why:
- The content of the comment was as evil and hateful as I've ever seen. That doesn't come from God. Nothing I saw was Biblical or holy or righteous. It was mostly terribly vile and a hate that made you understand what Jesus meant by saying that when you hate your brother it's like murder.
- The pace of the commenting was a deluge, and you could almost imagine a pack of demons gleefully and frantically piling on, driving people to go for the attack over and over. They were uncontrollably emotionally invested in this.
- The longevity of the commenting indicated an unwillingness to let it go, which means that the fountain of hate runs really deep in some of these folks. It was early evening when one of my posts caught the attention of the anti-Jew crowd, and as of 30 hours later as I write this, they're still at it. Some are still commenting even though I'm not even responding to all of them. It's quite amazing.
If all of the people who spouted Bible verses, laid claim to being a Christian, and in all ways signaled Christianity—yet responded like this—are a picture of the American church, we're really in trouble. We have CRT wokeness invading the church on the left, and anti-Semitism invading from the right. If these folks are actually attending church and are able to comfortably hold these beliefs, their churches are absolutely failing them. I'm hoping they are mostly cultural Christians who do not attend church.
There were many who were not religious, were atheists, or seemed to have pagan beliefs. I don't blame them for not understanding where I was coming from. But if you claim Jesus' name and put a Bible verse and a cross on your social media and then say these things while wrapping it in Christianese, your blindness is not excused. The hate (murder, according to Jesus) you're spewing sill be called into account by God. If you're truly a saved Holy Spirit-filled believer in Christ, what you're saying denies it.
So What About Gab, Then?
As one gal noted in a comment, there is probably a reason that Gab isn't gaining traction like other networks.
Torba is gradually becoming more anti-Trump and anti-Jew in his rhetoric, often mocking other platforms, to the point where I finally had to block him. There's no worse tool than the guy who thinks he isn't one.
To be clear, the platform itself is well designed.
It is superior to many others, like Parler or MeWe, in functionality (though their blocking functionality is a little off). It allows free speech; you can clearly say anything you want. I think their use of Cloudflare is their only weak link.
But the idea that the way the leader goes is how the people go is true on Gab. When Torba signals that certain types of content aren't only allowed, but perhaps preferred and likely to pop up in the "what's hot" feed by nature of it being his, you'll build a platform of similar people. It wasn't long before I saw strange anti-Semitic comments cropping up in a lead developer, then the founder, and in many of the profiles with purple Christian crosses in their profile names. Having a purple cross and "Christ is King" in the profile isn't an indicator of true faith in Jesus Christ, but instead, could mean just about anything including a hatred of Jews.
At first I thought it was a weird anomaly, the anti-Semitism, but in the past half year, it's become increasingly clear that it was not. And that continues to grow.
The Quandaries Of Free Speech Online
Free speech is part of liberty. Liberty requires self-control or it destroys itself. There's nothing like sinful humanity to turn liberty into licentiousness.
So, then, there are two threats to free speech:
- Censorship by government or corporate entities.
- People who lack self-control and use the gift of free speech to be hateful. Just because you can say something doesn't mean you should.
Gab has free speech, but there's far too much in the second category.
I want information on what happened during the election and what is going on now. I don't want to see a meme where Kamala Harris is called a cunt. I want information on what's really going on with masks and vaccines. I don't want to see a meme where people want to kill Fauci.
Big tech and mainstream media have restricted both. Gab has restricted neither. Which one is freeing?
Both have a trap.
The former traps you in controlled group think. But the latter forces you to constantly deal with social media to keep to the Philippians 4:8 principle (i.e. garbage in, garbage out) in place. If you're not careful, constant exposure will change you for the worse. Christians embracing free speech should not mock people who do not want to see filth and murderous hatred, because they should know God has told us to be careful what we allow into our minds and hearts. Yet I get a lot of purple cross Gabbers saying "what, you can't handle free speech you weakling?" and completely missing the point.
I have no idea how you deal with free speech online, with all of those variables. There's no digital algorithm for self-control or sin.
Without seriously aggressive constant blocking in which you block anti-Semitic or other crude content from both the person who posted it and the person who shared it (often people you followed because you thought they were Christian conservatives), Gab's going to be a real mess. It requires constant babysitting and upkeep. Their breaking news and running video feed are going to push it in your face without your control and you'll just have to see it.
If you want to do that, great. Gab as a platform is quite nice.
So Is Gab A No-Go?
But if you don't want social media to consume your life, and you don't want the devil to get any footholds in your head and heart that would distract you from God...you might want to pass.
Most people not steeped in hate are going to be caught off guard by what's on Gab. Nothing there of that nature is going to awaken you. It'll take you away from Jesus, plain and simple.
I had one fellow tell me I'd do well to "lurk more" and basically marinate in their hatred so I could "understand." There's a whole slew of Bible passages telling people not to do such a stupid thing, so I declined.
So here are your options:
- Wanna try Gab? Use it simply to publish and neither read nor respond to anything. Or only follow specific people you know are solid (e.g. Jan Markell, with Olive Tree Ministries, is a good option) and avoid the trending feed. There are some great people and news accounts on there. Be specific about who you follow. Make your account private.
- Use Telegram instead, and follow specific people without dealing with commenters. I really enjoy getting messages, audio updates, links, and videos from specific people and ministries I follow on Telegram. (e.g. Amir Tsarfati has an excellent channel for Middle East updates)
- Use MeWe which, despite the earlier threat of censorship, never really did that and is actually a nice place to be with some better controls for managing who and how you engage. There are more ministries, groups, and pages on MeWe of interest than I've found on Gab.
- Parler is OK, though the platform is still a little clunky and engagement is weird there. It's kind of struggling. But you won't see the garbage there that I've shown you in this post.
- Use a feed reader and get your favorite news and website articles directly, skipping the social aspect entirely while still staying informed.
- Facebook and Twitter are still awful. Skip them.
I paid for a Gab pro account. I bought a Gab shirt. I wanted to support them when I signed up, because their idea of a free platform seemed good. And if the founder himself wasn't promoting anti-Semitism as strongly as he has, I might have even found a way to continue. But knowing what he's publishing and how it's attracting and empowering a certain kind of people, I simply cannot send my money to Gab again.
It's one thing to build a free speech platform and acknowledge that some of it is going to be ugly, but it's another to promote and enable the ugly yourself.
Mostly, this all makes me sad. A few of the folks who had real names, I added to my prayer list. The deception is real, and time is short.
UPDATE: ABOUT 20 MINUTES AFTER PUBLISHING
I wrote this yesterday and published today. On a whim, I checked Gab again. Since last night, before I spent the evening reading and working my way through a stack of books that I have been meaning to finish, I had 138 notifications of these people still at it. Some good screenshots today.
|Well, there was Balfour in 1917, San Remo in 1920...but yeah. I am just uneducated compared to these folks. With their same images and memes.|
|As I told this fellow, come and take it. "Are you so dumb? Don't you know that's a law and you can't just take it?" "Exactly," I said.|
UPDATE June 14, 2021: After giving these people over a week, plus a weekend in which I just let the notifications clock up as they kept responding while I wasn't on Gab, I went in today and started blocking. About 20 percent blocked me on their own after sharing a post or making some comment.
And yes, they were still at it. A week later. After four days of not even responding. They're like a little dog with its mouth latched onto a steak, unable to quit it.
I will say this: anyone saying the Aryan, white-only, neo-Nazi whatever are friends of Trump are mistaken. What I found most in common on their profiles were Nazi symbols, hatred of various races and the Jews, and...a hatred of President Trump.