UPDATE: 2/27 6:30AM PST It seems the person making the attack, Shelley Rose, is part of a climate activist group, see below.
UPDATE: 2/27 2:50PM PST, The ADL Atlanta website has deleted comments on the issue, and has closed the press release to further comments. See below.
Boy, this is ugly, and I hope this boils down to simply an error in judgement by a lower tier administrator because this is like some bizzaro-world episode; on one hand the Anti-Defamation League is coming down against the “…type of comparison diminishes and trivializes the Holocaust.“, while on another they are giving a “get out of jail free card” to the people who have repeatedly done that very thing over several years.
Two telephone calls and two emails today requesting comment from ADL’s Southeast Interim Regional Director Shelly Rose have gone unanswered. She’s aware of my calls. I asked for her directly, gave my name and affiliation, and after a pause on hold her assistant asked if it would be OK to “send you to voice mail”. Ms Rose did provide a copy of the press release below, after I queried the main organization in New York after receiving a tip about this release, but found no evidence of its existence on the ADL Press Center website. The press release below still isn’t on the website as of this writing at 6:15PM EST well after close of business there. All of my requests were done during normal business hours for both the Atlanta and NYC office.
I have to wonder if the main organization is endorsing this press release, or if this is some regional director who went rogue.
Here is the press release.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Shelley Rose (404) 262-3470 work; 678-938-1399 cell
ADL Condemns Spencer’s Nazi Analogy
February 25, 2014, Atlanta, Georgia … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today denounced remarks by University of Alabama – Huntsville professor Roy Spencer who wrote on his blog that those who refer to him as a climate change “denier” should be called “global warming Nazis” and that they “are supporting policies that will kill far more people than the Nazis ever did — all in the name of what they consider to be a righteous cause.”
He also claims those who advocate for policies to slow global warming are “like the Nazis” in that they are fascist and anti-capitalist. The post is also accompanied by an image of a swastika.
Shelley Rose, ADL Southeast Interim Regional Director issued the following statement:
University of Alabama Professor Roy Spencer’s analogy of proponents of global warming to Nazis is outrageous and deeply offensive. This analogy is just the latest example of a troubling epidemic of comparisons to Hitler and the Holocaust.
It has become too common to use comparisons to the Holocaust and Nazi imagery to attack people with opposing views, whether the issue is global warming, immigration or stem-cell research.
The six million Jewish victims and millions of other victims of Hitler deserve better. Their deaths should not be used for political points or sloganeering. This type of comparison diminishes and trivializes the Holocaust. There is no place for it in civil discussions.
Shelley Rose |Interim Regional Director
Anti-Defamation League | 3490 Piedmont Road; Suite 610 | Atlanta, Georgia 30305
Phone: 404-262-3470 I Fax: 404-262-3548 I Cell: 678-938-1399 I email@example.com
I queried Ms Rose for a comment on the last paragraph, asking:
Wouldn’t that also apply to the use of “denier” to denigrate people, including Dr. Spencer. whose research has nothing to do with the holocaust or denial of it?
I also asked her to comment on the “green light” as a working title, asking if it was an accurate representation of their position. It was clear to me from the lack of response to two emails and two telephone calls was ” no comment”.
From their website, apparently slurs in major league football rate higher in concern than comparing climate skeptics to holocaust deniers for the purpose of denigration:
The League welcomed reports that the NFL is considering how to discourage the use of offensive slurs during the course of games and said that “the question of how to address offensive speech and the best ways to counter it on playing fields and in locker rooms is an important conversation.”
And that’s why I think this is bizarre. The selective hypocrisy is stunning. I’m hoping the main office in New York will come to their senses and disavow the press release from the “Interim Regional Director”. Surely they must see the ugly conundrum they’ve manufactured for themselves.
Dr. Roy Spencer responds:
He asks exactly what I was thinking; where was ADL all these years when such ugly and hateful comparisons were being made:
Ms. Rose, where was your organization when journalists, politicians, and even some scientists, chose to call us skeptics “deniers”?
We don’t deny either “global warming” or “climate change”. Yet, we are called “deniers”. Ms. Rose, do you have any inkling why the term “denier” (which is a lie) might be used against us, rather than the term “skeptic” (which is accurate)? I think you know why.
I’d really like to know how ADL can turn a blind eye the use of “denier” for the purpose of denigration while at the same time calling out a victim of the denigration for fighting back after years of abuse.
There’s also a newspaper article about it:
UAH climate expert Roy Spencer calls critics ‘global warming Nazis’; Anti-Defamation League objects
UPDATE: The PR is now posted on the Atlanta ADL website here
Comments are allowed there. Be civil if you leave comments please.
The only thing that makes sense to me is that this person simply doesn’t know the history, and committed a terrible error in judgment.
UPDATE2: 2/27 6:30AM PST It seems the person making the attack, Shelly Rose, is part of a climate activist group, see photo and caption.
The caption reads:
Congregations Caring for the Climate – Atlanta, GA
Bill Witherspoon, from Congregation Bet Haverim writes: This was taken Friday evening before Erev Shabbat Services. We had about three times this many for services eventually, but these were the ones who arrived in time for the photo. As part of our second week of the Omer to Honor the Earth, Shelley Rose (third from right, just right of our Torah scrolls) gave the d’var (sermon) on acting with awareness that we all breathe the same air, and Tovah Melaver (second from right) led a breathing meditation.
April 13, 2007
You can read all about this organization at http://stepitup2007.org
Of note is the list of “Friends and Allies” which reads like a who’s who in climate activism.
This whole episode makes a lot more sense now.
UPDATE3: 2/27 2:50PM PST, The ADL Atlanta website has deleted many comments on the issue, and has closed the press release to further comments. About an hour ago, I noted 90 comments were posted, now it is down to 50. See below.
Meanwhile I’ve drafted and sent a letter by email and by fax to ADL National Director, ABRAHAM H. FOXMAN asking if ADL plans to comment on the issue, and to ask id they plan to apply their condemnation equally, along with examples of what climate skeptics have been subjected to over the years. I think they simply have been caught unaware in a conundrum created by their Atlanta Interim Director.
I ask that if anyone makes communications with this organization, please be factual and respectful – Anthony