Technology and social media emboldening extremists’ antisemitism, says expert

Dec 7, 2022, 7:00 AM

Kanye West performs at the Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah Saturday Dec. 17, 2005....

Kanye West performs at the Delta Center in Salt Lake City, Utah Saturday Dec. 17, 2005. (Photo credit: August Miller/ Deseret Morning News)

(Photo credit: August Miller/ Deseret Morning News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Hate in general and antisemitism in particular are rising in America. And celebrities on social media seem to be caught up in feeding the flame of hate, says an Anti-Defamation League official. Examples below:

Kanye West’s antisemitic spiral explained

Nike severs ties with Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving amid antisemitism controversy

Trump dined with Kanye West and white nationalist Nick Fuentes, adviser says

Antisemitism in U.S.

Hosts of KSL@Night Maura Carabello and Taylor Morgan discuss the recent increase in antisemitism. They are joined by Regional Director at the Anti-Defamation League Seth Brysk for Northern California, Utah and Hawaii.

The Holocaust: Between 1941 and 1945, 6 million (6,000,000) European Jews were systematically murdered by the German Nazis during World War II.

Mauro started the program by pointing out this fact:

“Antisemitic incidents reached an all-time high in the United States in 2021, with a total of 2,717 incidents of assault, harassment and vandalism reported to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). This represents the highest number of incidents on record since ADL began tracking antisemitic incidents in 1979, which is an average of more than seven incidents per day and a 34 percent increase year over year,” according to the ADL.

Why is antisemitism rising?

“Why do you think we’re seeing this rise across America?” she asked.

 While social media and the internet have been a boon to humanity, it is also, sadly, a tool to spread hate, Brysk said.

“That’s the first reason, and then the second reason is this notion of what we’re seeing around, the emboldening of extremists. Again, you mentioned celebrities — people who have great following on social media, who are expressing, espousing antisemitic attitudes and are using their considerable platforms to promote this kind of hate,” Brysk said. “And by the way, not just hate directed at the Jewish community; it manifests in hate against other communities as well.”

With extremists feeling emboldened with rising antisemitism, be watchful of extremists who disguise their hate under words like “patriot,” he said. 

“They’re trying to use legitimate policy issues for debate — like immigration — as an entry point for them to espouse their hate,” Brysk said. “They’re also using big names. The former president [Trump] invited the people that you mentioned [white nationalist Nick Fuentes and rapper Kanye West] to dine with him and that gives them an air of credibility and exposure that they otherwise wouldn’t have.”

Teaching the history of genocide

Taylor mentioned the Legislature passed a resolution last year  stressing the importance of educating Utah schoolchildren about the Holocaust and genocide.

Utah rabbi says Holocaust education resolution is ‘justified and necessary’ as denial increases

“Are you seeing similar issues in other states in your region that there’s a growing sense of denying history and attributing it to conspiracies?” Taylor asked.

“Yeah, there are,” Brysk said. “We are seeing that trend happen in Utah as well in other states, and not just in my region but across the country. . .  We’ve had to undertake efforts to bolster Holocaust education or revisit the lessons that are being taught to find out why is it that this information is not transmitting to the next generation.”

The education and lessons of the Holocaust are increasingly important as the only eyewitnesses to “perhaps humanity’s greatest crime are dying out,” Brysk said.


We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories

Biden and McCarthy's political futures could hinge on their ability to pass the legislation while a...

Kevin Liptak, CNN

Biden and McCarthy lean on holdouts to pass debt ceiling deal

Speaking from the White House on Sunday, Biden hailed the agreement as critical to preventing economic disaster.

9 hours ago

Kim Beck, owner of Top Dog Snake Finders, geared up and looking for rattlesnakes. (KSL TV)...


Rattlesnakes are appearing on Utah trails, around homes later than normal

There has been an uptick in reports of rattlesnakes on trails and around homes. They are coming out later than usual due to wet weather.

9 hours ago

The aftermath of the small plane crash in Washington County. (Enterprise Fire and EMS)...


Pilot crashes small plane in southern Utah after buying it from Nevada, officials say

The pilot of a small plane walked away after crashing in Washington County over the weekend. Officials are investigating the cause.

9 hours ago

Venice canal turns fluorescent green...

Barbie Latza Nadeau and Sophie Tanno, CNN

Venice authorities investigate after canal turns fluorescent green

Venetian authorities are investigating after a patch of fluorescent green water appeared in the famed Grand Canal on Sunday morning.

1 day ago

State Farm stops home insurance sales in California...

Ramishah Maruf, CNN

State Farm stops home insurance sales in California, citing wildfire risks

State Farm is stopping new home insurance sales in California, citing wildfire risks and skyrocketing construction costs.

1 day ago


Michelle Lee

Tackling the loneliness epidemic

SALT LAKE CITY – Loneliness is a feeling that many people struggle with. It’s so common that there’s even a loneliness epidemic in the United States. In the latest Let’s Get Moving with Maria podcast episode, host Maria Shilaos spoke with Dr. Julianne Holt-Lunstad, Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Brigham Young University and the […]

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

close up of rose marvel saliva blooms in purple...

Shannon Cavalero

Drought Tolerant Perennials for Utah

The best drought tolerant plants for Utah can handle high elevations, alkaline soils, excessive exposure to wind, and use of secondary water.

Group of cheerful team members high fiving each other...

Visit Bear Lake

How To Plan a Business Retreat in Bear Lake This Spring

Are you wondering how to plan a business retreat this spring? Read our sample itinerary to plan a team getaway to Bear Lake.

Cheerful young woman writing an assignment while sitting at desk between two classmates during clas...

BYU EMBA at the Marriott School of Business

Hear it Firsthand: 6 Students Share Their Executive MBA Experience at BYU’s Marriott School of Business

The Executive MBA program at BYU offers great opportunities. Hear experiences straight from students enrolled in the program.

Skier being towed by a rider on a horse. Skijoring....

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking for a New Winter Activity? Try Skijoring in Bear Lake

Skijoring is when someone on skis is pulled by a horse, dog, animal, or motor vehicle. The driver leads the skiers through an obstacle course over jumps, hoops, and gates.

Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...

Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer.

Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy.

Technology and social media emboldening extremists’ antisemitism, says expert