Friday, December 12, 2014

Arizona Pastor Boasts About Tricking Rabbis Into Participating in Anti-Semitic Film

[Cross-posted at Hatewatch.]
Three Phoenix-area rabbis were recently tricked into participating in the production of an anti-Semitic film by Steven Anderson, the Arizona pastor who has made headlines with his vitriolic rants about LGBT people and President Obama.

Anderson, whose Tempe-based Faith Temple Baptist Church is among the most hardcore anti-LGBT hate groups in the country, has attracted attention for his rants wishing death upon President Obama and gays and lesbians, as well as for declaring that birth control was turning American women into “whores.” At one point, Anderson was tasered at a checkpoint on the Mexico border while defying a patrolman’s orders. He recently made headlines by predicting that America could have an AIDS-free Christmas if all gays are killed, as the Bible demands.

But in recent months, Anderson’s ministry has also taken a decidedly anti-Semitic turn, as Stephen Lemons explored in a recent Phoenix New Times post.

Anderson has given sermons—preserved on YouTube—covering such subjects as “The Jews and Their Lies,” “Hebrew Roots Movement Exposed,” “The Jews Are Antichrists,” “Jews Worship a Different God Than Christians,” “The Jews Are the Racists,” and the ever-popular “The Jews Killed Jesus.”

Anderson and his cohort, Paul Wittenberger, are currently coproducing an anti-Semitic film titled Marching to Zion, described on YouTube as providing “Scriptural evidence that the Jews are no longer God’s chosen people.” It also purports to reveal that rabbinical Judaism’s Messiah is the Antichrist; among the “topics covered” are “Blasphemous teachings of the Talmud and Kabbalah,” “Modern DNA evidence of the Jews’ ancestry,” and “Proof that Christian Zionism is a modern phenomenon.”

Four Phoenix-area rabbis are interviewed for the film, which has prompted outrage in the Jewish community.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) issued a statement saying it was “deeply troubled by the upcoming release of a new ‘documentary’ geared toward Christian audiences that purportedly will focus on ‘the history of the Jews,’ but in fact will likely serve as a tool for denigrating Jews and Judaism.”

Anderson recently boasted during one of his Internet radio broadcasts how he came to include the four rabbis:
Well, here’s how I got the four rabbis to participate. I got a list of every rabbi in Arizona, and I think I got 41 rabbis. And I just figured, you know, if I contact enough rabbis, somebody’s going to agree to do it. And so I actually contacted all 41 of them, and I told them I was making a film about Judaism and the history of the nation of Israel, which is true, and I gave them a whole list of questions and those questions are the questions that I asked in the interview.

So they knew the questions they were being asked going in. I told them it was going to be about Judaism and the nation of Israel, but I didn’t tell them whether it was going to be positive or negative. Well, they just assume it’s going to be positive, because they assume that I’m going to be like the rest of evangelicals in Christianity and bow down to the chosen ones and worship them and say how great they are.

So basically, all four of them are going to hate this movie, of course, but it’s the truth, they’re false prophets and they deserve to be exposed and I didn’t lie to them, I mean, everything I told them was the truth.
According to the Jewish News, the rabbis who took part did not realize the nature of the production. Anderson allegedly described himself as “an interested layperson” making a documentary explaining elements of the Jewish faith.

Rabbi Irwin Wiener, one of the four Jewish interviewees, was outraged: “The subterfuge that he used to get these interviews from us is beyond belief.”

According to the report, Anderson had told the interviewees that he was making the documentary for the Public Broadcasting System. “When he used the words PBS to me, it sounded legitimate and I didn’t pursue it any further,” Wiener said.

Another interviewee, Orthodox Rabbi Reuven Mann, was blindsided by the discovery that he had been tricked, since he felt a responsibility to explain his faith to anyone interested. “I’m very open about this and I don’t suspect that anyone has any ulterior motives,” he said.

But Anderson was defensive in his Internet broadcast when his interlocutor about the rabbis—who in fact, was Stephen Lemons—pressed him on whether he had deceived his subjects, notably with the claim to be making a PBS documentary.

“Well, guess what, who is a liar but he that deny that Jesus is the Christ,” Anderson retorted. “He’s anti-Christ. So basically, if somebody is lying and saying that Jesus isn’t the messiah, it also does not surprise me that they would lie and say I was selling the film to PBS.”

Lemons then asked Anderson if he was being deceptive himself. “Ooh,” he said mockingly, “it’s possible that I could be lying too. It’s also possible that the Bible could be lying but guess what the Bible’s not lying and it’s the Jews that are lying.”

Anderson then hung up on Lemons, and continued with his anti-Semitic rant: “So obviously this is somebody who is calling in trying to defend the anti-Christ Jews and he’d rather listen to somebody who calls himself a rabbi and spits on the name of Jesus Christ and calls Jesus a bastard and his mother a whore, and he thinks I’m lying because I supposedly claimed I was selling the film to PBS? No I never said any such thing, and the lying Jewish rabbi that told you that made it up.”

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

‘Antigovernment’ Figures to Lead ‘We Will Not Comply’ Rally in Washington State Over Gun Rights

[Cross-posted at Hatewatch.]

A slate of national and state antigovernment “Patriot” movement figures—including former Arizona Sheriff  Richard Mack, antigovernment propagandist Mike Vanderboegh and Ammon Bundy, the son of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy—is scheduled to lead Saturday’s “We Will Not Comply” rally in Olympia, Wash., protesting a gun-control measure taking effect this month.

Organized by self-described “liberty speaker” Gavin Seim, the rally’s stated purpose is to openly defy the new law, known as Initiative 594, which requires background checks for guns sold by private gun owners.

“We will rally at the capitol, openly exchange guns, unveil and plan to break apart the entire legislation and violate I-594 in every possible way. … We will buy and sell guns from whom we please, we will not submit to background checks, we will not give up our rights, WE WILL NOT comply,” the rally’s organizers say.

The organizers claim that 5,000 gun owners will attend, but the source of that figure is unclear and historically such rallies have drawn considerably smaller crowds. It also remains unclear if the rally even has a permit, typically required for demonstrations on Capitol grounds.

Seim, when told by state officials that a permit wasn’t available because another group had already been given a permit for that date, responded defiantly: “First let’s be clear. We are not asking for your ‘authorization’ and we’re not ‘applying’ to the State. We are allowing them the opportunity to work with us. I did in fact clearly inform you we would be gathering on the main lawn right from the start and there was no doubt about where I meant. What I have outlined is what we ARE doing. … We informed you of the plan out of courtesy. You can work with us, or you can play games.”

It is uncler clear if the activities that occur Saturday will actually break any laws, and Washington State Police officials say they do not expect to make any arrests at the rally.

The rally’s scheduled speakers include Mack, a longtime militia darling who recently made headlines with his involvement in the standoff with federal agents at Bundy’s Nevada ranch, where Ammon Bundy also became well-known as a media spokesman for his family. At one point in the standoff, Ammon Bundy was tasered after law enforcement officials say he tried to kick a police dog.

, a cofounder of the so-called “III Percent” Movement, was also at the Bundy ranch but is perhaps best known for having urged conservatives to throw bricks through the windows of Democrats’ offices in March 2010 to protest the passage of the Affordable Care Act. In recent weeks he has toured states where gun control laws have been passed to promote the “I Will Not Comply” concept.

“I have gone around the country breaking (and encouraging others to break) unconstitutional state laws such as those recently passed in CT, NY, MD, CO and now, Washington State,” he boasted on his blog. “I have smuggled, and facilitated the smuggling of, standard capacity magazines in violation of those laws and dared the authorities of those states to do anything about it.”

Washington state Rep. Elizabeth Scott, R-Monroe, an arch-conservative who has aligned herself closely with antigovernment activists, is also among the scheduled speakers. Scott gained a reputation for arch-conservative positions during her first two years in the House, including second-guessing federal cleanup efforts at the Oso landslide disaster that occurred in Snohomish County in March.

The Oath Keepers, a group of retired military and police personnel fearful of the New World Order, posted a bulletin urging members to attend. However, a number of the state’s leading anti-gun control organizations, including the National Rifle Association and Alan Gottlieb’s Bellevue-based Second Amendment Foundation, have declined either to endorse or participate in the rally.

Seim recently issued a final appeal on Facebook to the reluctant gun owners: “I’m sad to report that nearly ALL gun rights and show groups and even some patriot groups have NOT supported America’s courageous stand for liberty on the 13th,” he wrote. “We the people in mass are standing tall, but those that should be standing with us are silent. I ask patriots to contact groups tomorrow and invite them to stand with us.”