Booksellers disavow content of controversial title
News.com has a story on a move by Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com to post statements that say they don\'t endorse the views expressed in \"The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion,\". The actions are already drawing criticism from an online civil rights group.
\"The book is anti-Semitic (and) used by haters every day of the week to promote their ideology,\" said Myrna Shinbaum, the ADL director of media relations. She said the ADL contacted the booksellers after receiving hundreds of complaints.\"
The ADL said it had submitted the following statement, although it had not yet appeared at Amazon or Barnesandnoble.com late today:
\"The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, circulated by the Czarist secret police at the turn of the 20th century, is plainly and simply a plagiarized forgery. The Protocols has been a major weapon in the arsenals of anti-Semites around the world, republished and circulated by individuals, hate groups and governments to convince the gullible as well as the bigoted that Jews have schemed and plotted to take over the world.\"
But an attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an online civil rights group, called the disclaimers a \"mistake,\" noting that consumers would not find them in a brick-and-mortar bookstore and that they could lead to other groups seeking similar disclaimers on material they found offensive, such as abortion.
\"This is an easy case,\" attorney Deborah Pierce said. \"Most people would find this book distasteful. But what happens when you get to things that have a little less consensus?