Tech billionaire Elon Musk says the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which has called for censorship of conservatives on a variety of social media platforms, was “instrumental” in getting former President Donald Trump banned from Twitter, now known as X.
The CEO of SpaceX and Tesla purchased the social media platform in October 2022 for $44 billion after months of waffling, verbal mudslinging, and lawsuits. Trump was permanently banned from the platform in January 2021.
“The ADL was instrumental in getting Donald Trump deplatformed,” Musk told the “All-In Podcast.” “And then when we restored the account, they made it super clear that they regarded simply restoring his account … that constituted hate speech.
“He hasn’t even said anything,” he continued. “He has to at least say something, or post something, for there to be incremental hateful content. This is absurd. And what’s this got to do with antisemitism? Donald Trump’s son-in-law is Jewish; he has Jewish grandkids. I’m pretty sure he’s not antisemitic, OK? I mean, he was at their wedding.”
Musk also said the ADL spearheaded the effort to throttle the company’s advertising revenue after he pledged to bring free speech back to the social media platform.
“The fact of the matter is the ADL did initiate a boycott,” he said. “They call it a ‘pause,’ but a ‘pause’ that is a never-ending boycott — same thing. We saw a massive drop in U.S. advertising. We saw basically no change in advertising in Asia. But domestically, where the ADL is strong, we saw a 60% drop. So that’s pretty intense.
“This is despite repeated analyses of the system, including third-party analysis of the system, showing that the number of views of hateful content declined — third parties that have all the data analyzed and said, actually, there’s less hate speech.”
Musk continued by saying that the issue with the ADL has nothing to do with “hate speech” or “antisemitism.”
“It’s that the ADL and a lot of other organizations have become activist organizations which are acting far beyond their stated mandate, or their original mandate, and I think far beyond what donors to those organizations think they are doing,” he added.
Earlier this month, #BanTheADL began circulating on X after Musk accused the organization of “trying to kill” the platform. The tech billionaire has threatened to sue the ADL “to clear our platform’s name on the matter of anti-Semitism.”
In a series of posts last week, Musk said the hate-speech watchdog “has been trying to kill this platform by falsely accusing it & me of being anti-Semitic.”
He stressed that he is “pro free speech, but against anti-Semitism of any kind” and suggested that the ADL’s comments were to blame for the downturn in advertising revenue.
ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt denounced supporters of the hashtag, which reportedly included a number of well-known conservatives, in a CNBC interview, calling them “white supremacists” and “hardened antisemites.”
Nicole Wells ✉
Nicole Wells, a Newsmax general assignment reporter covers news, politics, and culture. She is a National Newspaper Association award-winning journalist.
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