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Change.org Challenges Anti-CAIR Petition


The online petition site Change.org has flagged a petition by the organization Stop Antisemitism that calls on US Attorney General William Barr and special antisemitism envoy Elan Carr to take a deep look at the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

This petition no longer comes up on Google or Change.org Internet searches and it cannot be “boosted” to the Change.org network, a key to a Change.org petition’s success.

Earlier this week, Stop Antisemitism co-founder Liora Rez noticed that she was receiving several emails from the organization’s supporters who were experiencing problems signing the petition or accessing it. At first, she told The Jerusalem Post, she thought it was technical problems on behalf of her older members. But when she opened the petition page, she saw access had been changed.

A pink bar at the top of the petition page reads, “Change.org has received flags from our users that the statements in this petition may be contested. You should consider researching this issue before signing or sharing.”

Rez said she immediately appealed to Change.org, which she has used many times in the past. “They are usually very responsive. I get a response to any question in within an hour,” Rez said. “This time it took them three days to reply.”

Stop Antisemitism is a grassroots organization founded by a group of individuals interested in “waking up the American people” and “eradicating the hatred that seeks to ruin our American way of life,” said Rez. The organization has run other petitions on the site.

When the company did reply they accused Rez of her petition being unsubstantiated. But she said her research on CAIR, Omar and Tlaib is well documented and links to this documentation are on the petition landing page. She sent this information to Change.org, including showing that in 2007, CAIR was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the case that found Holy Land Foundation responsible for siphoning over $12 million to Hamas. Also, in a 2009 ruling, US District Court Judge Jorge A. Solis determined that CAIR is Hamas.

The petition also claims that Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib are “strong allies” of CAIR, and that the organization helped get these Muslim women into office.

The CAIR website denies the above allegations and says the group is focused on combating “stereotyping and defamation.”

The Post likewise contacted Change.org about the petition.

A.J. Walton, Change.org spokesperson, explained that when a petition is flagged by users, “we review its content to see if it violates our stated policies and to determine whether or not the petition should be removed.

“Since the petition itself does not violate our terms, we have not removed it entirely,” he said. “However, we have taken steps to ensure users know we are aware of their concerns by including the banner at the top of the petition, disabled the comments feature, particularly in light of the many that violate our community guidelines, and limited the petition’s discovery on our platform.” 

Winston said users can still sign and share the petition. 

“Anytime you mention Ilhan Omar or CAIR, the second you try to question CAIR, you immediately encounter problems,” Rez said. “Without a doubt this is some form of censorship and must be questioned.”

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The original publication can be found here.