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Facebook claiming page titled "Witches Must Die by Fire" Not Hate Speech

Very few things in social media get me too terribly worked up, but today I encountered and reported a Facebook page titled, "Witches must die by fire." The fact that an anti-Pagan site on FB exists doesn't surprise me, though how overt that hate is took me aback. What disturbs me more is that Pagans who have reported are getting an answer of "there is no evidence of hate speech."

How can a page that spreads slander, misinformation and exhorts violence against Pagans not be termed hate speech? If this were any other faith, would this even be vaguely acceptable? If you subbed in Jews or Muslims, would this be allowed. I would hope not, but given this, I am kind of afraid to ask, actually.

Disgustedly yours,

H

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Lokean nun, writer, swamp witch. Heather is a Pagan monastic, writer, editor, and mother. She has written and edited for a variety of publications and social media, including science journals, romance novels, and technology blogs. She also holds degrees in education and speech-language pathology, and has a passion for historical linguistics.

Comments

  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven Thursday, 15 August 2013

    I, too, am completely disgusted by this page. Fortunately, it appears moribund; there hasn't been a post there since April.

  • Lisa Huntington
    Lisa Huntington Thursday, 15 August 2013

    It is 10:30pm est... There have been 12 posts on that page in the last 2 hours. I can not understand why Facebook isn't paying any attention to this. I agree that if "Jews" or "Muslims" were substituted for "Witches" that page wouldn't be there for anyone to see now. It would have been taken down relatively quickly

  • Celestine Angel
    Celestine Angel Thursday, 15 August 2013

    What's worse is that it's obvious by response times that no one at Facebook is really looking at the page; I received a decision back in under a minute. Probably under thirty seconds. That can't possible be enough time to evaluate the whole page... well, it could, if the decision were made on the title alone, by someone with sense.

  • Joseph Bloch
    Joseph Bloch Thursday, 15 August 2013

    Judging by the header (which has "Togokudzidzisa kuti kuroyonora kunoitwa sei!!" in there), the person behind this is based in Zimbabwe.

    If you've been following the Midgard Gazette here on PaganSquare for any length of time, you'll see that this sort of agitprop can lead directly not only to violence, but literal murder. Other than continuing to flood Facebook with complaints about the page, I'm not sure what else can be done on an official level. I heartily encourage everyone to register a complaint about the page. FB will respond if they get enough complaints-- they do track volume on that sort of thing.

    There are, of course, all sorts of... ahem... unofficial things that can be done as well.

  • cindi
    cindi Thursday, 15 August 2013

    ...of all the things wrong in the world today, this is really sad that small minded, deep pocketed people have to do is pick on people and their personal choices. Has the world really become so petty and sad, to target people which has NO desire to hurt anyone. I will be complaining to facebook

  • Joseph Bloch
    Joseph Bloch Thursday, 15 August 2013

    "Deep pocketed"? Hardly. Doesn't take deep pockets to set up a Facebook page. Just an internet connection and the time to do it. More's the pity. If it did take more resources than some zealot in a hut in Zimbabwe could afford, we'd see a lot less of it.

  • Carol Landolfo
    Carol Landolfo Friday, 16 August 2013

    It appears we won....I cant find the page and any link brings me to my page!
    Witches/Pagans: 1
    Evil Christians wanna be's: 0

  • Heather Freysdottir
    Heather Freysdottir Friday, 16 August 2013

    http://www.iruntheinternet.com/lulzdump/images/tard-grumpy-cat-good-sad-13529885618.jpg

  • Selina Rifkin
    Selina Rifkin Friday, 16 August 2013

    This is not the only one. Here's another
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/163986480405404/

    I reported them both.

  • Greg
    Greg Friday, 16 August 2013

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/163986480405404/

    Here is another FB group advocating violence and death against witches and "WIZZADS." Posts include gems like the following:

    "A witch must not live....ayayaya...let them die your death...."

    "FIRE FIRE FIRE FIRE FIRE FIRE FIRE

    AM A FLAME OF FIRE WHAT EVER SATAN IS TRYIN OR SAYIN ABUT US.....MAY GOD'S POWER...OVERCOME THEM ND DESTROY ALL THERE PLANS,AGAINST US

    SATAN ND HIS AGENTS ARE JUST SMALL COCKROSHES I DNT FAIR CHICKENS I BREAK THEM ALL WITCHES ND WIZZADS PSTR ANTHONY IS BCK AGAIN U GO SUFFER TO DIE U SPIRIT DAT IS OPPRESSES THE WORLD OUT IJN AMEN"

    "God my father, i if be your daughter my God let the fire come down right now and burn down all their altars and their tools Jehovah. "

    etc. etc. etc.

  • Ali
    Ali Friday, 16 August 2013

    I too, have found this second page that is obviously based in some unfortunate African country where unlucky females who come under suspect are surely murdered horribly. I tried to report it for hate speech against a religious faction too and got the same message. We need to band together to bring this page down too!
    I'm all for free speech, and I don't have an agenda to bring christians down per se (though it would do the world a whole lot of good if it went into recession), but this is just awful and I actually became nauseous reading some of the crap on there. These people need a wake up call!

  • Kaitlyn Hancock
    Kaitlyn Hancock Friday, 16 August 2013

    Keep reporting these people. Facebook has some automated bs, but enough complaints will get their attention. I contacted Covenant of the Goddess too. They have stated they are watching. I will continue to report to them. If you are unfamiliar with what COG is about, they are a great resource. www.cog.org

  • Richard Daley
    Richard Daley Friday, 16 August 2013

    what do you expect from a country that missionary's literally band there original pagan traditions and brain washed them all into believing a book written by man.

  • Áine
    Áine Sunday, 18 August 2013

    I'm afraid I can still see the page from the original link. Reporting it now.

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