ADC at work

June 6, 2011 Agencies
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Melbourne’s Anti-Defamation Commission has resolved two matters of concern to the community – racism within the AFL and the distribution of the Hipster Hitler T-Shirts on the RedBubble web site.

In a statement issued today, the ADC  headed by chairman Anton Block said:

The Jewish anti-racism group ADC says the thoughtful actions of football chiefs and t-shirt vendors show Victoria has a growing sensitivity to fighting racism.

Over the past week, two unconnected incidents have shown that, when alerted to problems, commercial and community interests are prepared to stand up for the values of multicultural Australia.

ADC Chairman Anton Block praised art t-shirt marketplace RedBubble and AFL officials and fans for their responsiveness in the face of offensive behaviour.

RedBubble withdrew a t-shirt line based on the comic Hipster Hitler, which trivialized the Holocaust with such slogans as “Back to the Fuhrer” and “Death Camp for Cutie”. AFL officials and fans acted quickly to curtail a spectator who racially abused Sudanese-born North Melbourne rookie Majak Daw.

ADC Chairman Anton Block said the two very different cases showed that standing up against racism and hate is powerful and necessary.

“It’s not a matter of free speech or censorship. It’s a matter of sensitivity and decency. Respect for each other’s backgrounds and histories doesn’t just happen. We have to work at it and we are very proud that our work in this area is paying off.

“As a Jewish organisation we have a particular sensitivity to antisemitism and this led us to get in touch with RedBubble after a number of complaints about Hipster Hitler. But we also care about other minorities and our thoughts go out to Daw and to other survivors of the Sudanese genocide.”

Mr Block said the ADC had held a productive meeting with RedBubble co-founder Martin Hosking and provided assistance in drawing up a community guidelines which ensured it respected survivors of violence and trauma, just as it has community guidelines on pornography and racism. RedBubble chose voluntarily to withdraw the Hipster Hitler line in response.

“RedBubble has shown commercial interests don’t have to lack values and sensitivity to human experience, just as the AFL has shown it won’t tolerate racism. Jewish Australians still experience antisemitic abuse from time to time, particularly when passions run high over the Middle East. We need to know all Victorians will stand up against hate.”



7 Responses to “ADC at work”
  1. Jennifer says:

    It’s obvious the t-shirts were withdrawn reluctantly and under pressure. If Hoskings had some insight and was genuine he would admit he got it wrong and apologize for the t-shirts he has sold, but he’s still dissembling about what he has done and why and offering no apology.

  2. A.Sing says:

    Words fail me, that Martin Hosking would fight so hard to keep these T-shirts on his website till the bitter end. They clearly mock victims of the holocaust, and his failure to either understand this or admit to this, leaves one to wonder what exactly is he thinking?

    There were numerous members from his art site who protested for over 7 months to get these shirts off the site. He deduced and undermined these members by addressing them as “a vocal minority (or mob) leaving in ‘tens'”. Disrespect toward the same highly talented and well known members whom helped his site be as popular as it is today.

    Martin Hosking – I think many people would like to know if you will be offering an apology to those members who protested the hipster hitler shirts from day one, whom you referred to as ‘a vocal minority and mob, who are leaving in tens’. As if they are so insignificant and uncivil.

    Why don’t we take a trip down memory lane on Hosking’s long standing defense of Hipster Hitler, as well as all those who supported Martin Hosking and Hipster Hitler.

    Martin’s journal about “Free Speech”:

    Hipster Hitler’s ‘copy and paste’ interview posted in his Redbubble journal:

    Martin Hosking- Do you also include the ADC and other Jewish organizations that investigated you as ‘a vocal minority or mob’?

  3. Eli Ben-Moshe says:

    I am glad the ADC dealt with this company and its promoter in a tough manner and that the company has withdrawn the line of tees. The tees normalized Hitler and Nazism and it is just one step from this thinking to actual attacks. If someone can think it, and wear a t-shirt that says “Back to the Fuhrer”, what is this person saying about Jews? What might this person do? So I am not concerned about the ADC’s priorities.

  4. Michael says:

    Wow what an achievement they must have being working on this extraordinary difficult project for a long time and really pulled out the big Gun legal eagles to solve this T – Shirt problem. You would think with limited funds and staff they would concentrate on more pressing problems .What Priorities the ADC have or don’t?

    Now perhaps the ADC can start working on tackling the problem of extremists from within the community we are not allowed to mention who threaten our security on a daily basis .

    I presume our Community doesn’t spend tens of Millions of dollars each year securing our Synagogues, Community centers, day schools and visiting Israelis just to keep the Security Industry in business.

    Or perhaps the ADC believe its our [Jewish] lot in life to live under a siege like mentality….

  5. Gabi says:

    Just to add. This was taken from Hipster Hitlers facebook page : We understand RB’s decision and really appreciate how much they did fight for us.

    So RB fought to keep them??? that is a shocker.

  6. Gabi says:

    I am so glad that FINALLY they are gone. It is just a pity that Mr Hoskings refused to listen to his members 6 months ago then this all started. But we are very grateful for the ADC and everything that they have done. Thank you!

  7. Jennifer says:

    It took an awful long time and awful lot of pressure to get RedBubble to withdraw the t-shirts. But without the ADC it would never have happened, so thank goodness for the ADC!

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