Facebook’s waging war on my
Hebrew name - A Case Summary in Sixteen Points
1. I am an observant
(Orthodox) Jew and a Jewish activist and I opened a Facebook account under my Hebrew
name, Ariel ben Yochanan, some seven years ago. 2. Everything was fine,
until probably an anti-Semite must have reported me and Facebook obliged by disabling
my account on June 15 ’17 saying that: "It looks
like you're using a name on Facebook that goes against our policies. Can we
update your name on Facebook to Andras Bereny?
If we update your name, Andras Bereny will be the name people see on your
profile and anywhere else your name appears on Facebook (ex: tagged photos,
past posts, search).
If you're already using the name you go by in everyday life, select Don't
Update and we'll help you confirm your current name".
3. Andras Bereny is the name on my ID,
bank account, etc. and we Jews call it a “slave name”.
4. So, of course I clicked
on Don't Upgrade, as on Facebook I want to appear under my Hebrew name, with
which we are getting called up to the Torah in the synagogue and under this
name I run my blog, the Torah Revolution, comment on Jewish and on Torah issues
and write articles. I provided Facebook
with a link to such an article,
where the editor even explains that I write under my Hebrew name, but Facebook
didn’t bulge, they keep my account blocked, as if preventing the use of my Hebrew name was their hidden and
5. In the following I am going to show
that a Jew’s Hebrew name is an outward sign of his Judaism, just like wearing a
kipah (yarmulke), tzitzit (fringes), talit (prayer shawl) or tefilin (phylacteries) and that therefore preventing its use is allegedly unlawful, in as much as
it allegedly goes against the principles of Freedom of Religion. The
maintenance of the guarantees under the Freedom of Religion is extremely
important, especially for minorities, like the Jews, who were limited and
persecuted by enemy nations in most of recorded history. We don’t want Facebook
in particular and the corporate world in general to be allowed to go down again
on this road.
6. I will prove the point in two ways:
The first way is to say that there is a
Midrash (Jewish religious literature) that sheds light on the importance of a
Hebrew name in Judaism. From it we learn that the very redemption from our
slavery in Egypt is merited in function of three attributes:
We kept our language,
We kept our Hebrew names and
We kept our Jewish clothing.
view of this we can conclude that not even the Egyptians did to us during our
slavery up until about 3300 years ago what Facebook is doing to me now, namely
bullying me under the pretense of their “policies” to renounce the use of my Hebrew
As a consequence, we see that keeping our Hebrew names has a special place,
significance and importance in Jewish tradition (Mesorah), that even many
non-religious Jews keep, irrespective of whether it is registered or not
registered, documented or not documented, used for utility bills or not used
for utility bills, all alleged limitations that Facebook unlawfully places on
an outwardly sign of one’s Jewish identity. For a better understanding of this
issue please read the following four articles available online, or google
“Hebrew names in Judaism”:
Dress, and Names – Jewish continuity in a nutshell
other way to establish that Hebrew names are an integral part of our Jewish
identity is to observe:
That only Jews have Hebrew names;
That almost all Jews have Hebrew names and
That non-Jews do not have Hebrew names.
Once we establish that a Hebrew name is an integral part of the Jewish
identity, it becomes immediately obvious that negating a Jew the right to use his
or her Hebrew name is allegedly anti-Semitic in nature and if it is done in the
name of company policy, it is the company policy that is allegedly anti-Semitic,
even if not intentionally so, and it must therefore be changed or repealed altogether
without delay under the principle of Freedom of Religion: The Hebrew name of a
Jew is NOT a “fake name”, as it is presently treated by Facebook, it is one of
the manifestations of the identity of a
person as a Jew, just like wearing a kipah, tzitzit, talit or tefilin!
11. The latest in this tragic,
anti-Jewish escalation is that Facebook changed the message that appears on my
log in page and now they are directly prompting me to sign in as Andras Bereny:
I firmly believe it is my sacrosanct Jewish right to be able to use and be
known by my Hebrew name and be listed on Facebook under Ariel ben Yochanan.
It’s not what they call a “fake name”. It is my Hebrew name and I maintain that
its use is protected by the very principles of Freedom of Religion. I will not
renounce of its use, even if they put me on the wheel or burned me at the stake
alive, like their presumed ideological predecessors did during the times of the
12. My account has more than 1500
Facebook friends, out of which more than 200 are “followers”, meaning that they
want to see my posts and read my comments: Blocking my account harms them as
well, not only me.
13. With some contacts, like old
class-mates, friends and associates, my Facebook account is the only means to
keep in touch, as they don’t know my email address (email@example.com) and I don’t know theirs.
14. I would like to mention here that
my account was disabled by Facebook from one minute to the next, with no warning,
so I was not even given the possibility to collect and save the emails of my contacts
or to warn them of what was coming.
15. One email in particular I received
from a friend said that he got “frightened” seeing my account disappear. What
right Facebook has to frighten my friends? Another person started to read a
private message from me and when she returned to finish reading it, it was
gone, disappeared from her screen: A traumatizing experience for which there is
16. I therefore require the following three
actions to be taken:
a) Facebook must re-activate my account immediately, under my Hebrew name,
Ariel ben Yochanan;
b) Facebook must issue a public statement in which it apologizes for its alleged
anti-Jewish policies concerning their limiting the use of the Hebrew names of
c) Facebook must pay me damages, effective, moral and punitive. The idea is
to make sure that Facebook never negates a basic Jewishright to a Jew
again, like it allegedly does to me now, by preventing me from being listed
under my Hebrew name on their website.
"I really enjoy your blog, good sir. You make some good points that no one else seems to want to talk about". (Signed)
- AbY: "Think for a sec about this State and the fact that it didn't have a day of peace in 66 years. Why do you think that is?
- Batsheva Ben-Ador: "Oh, I know it too well. I am saying so even when I know it is not welcome - but the Truth of G-d is real and present, even if they all want to close their eyes and stick to a sinful cowardly liberal notion of a treacherous, G-dless zionist occupier of Eretz Yisrael. People are simply unwilling to look at the truth and accept the corruption and violation, the sacrilege of the Divine Land that G-d Himself has given to us. Traitors to the Cause of G-d..."
"I agree with you. Many many years ago before I became frum I was a zionist. I do not want zionism at my seder table, I want Torah!!!! I want to tell you that I do read a lot of what you write and I agree with you!!!! Israel needs more Torah not more zionists!!!! It sickens me the way the govt/media treat the Torah lovers in Israel".Jarred Nisenfeld
"In the Torah only Hashem is G-D... not the nation nor the land. Anything else is avodah zarah." Ian Ellul
"Shalom Ariel, you dream like me, one day in Yerushalaym there will be no churches no mosques, only Beit HaMikdash will be standing and The Name of Hashem will Be Echad Forever." Eduardo Carneiro De Araújo
"The Deception is very strong right now, but nothing in comparison to HaShem!!! Yes, I agree. HaShem is who our Allegiance belongs, not in Man. (Signed) " Besrat H' my children will never serve the state in any capacity" Yacov Stanley
"Evil is always terrified of good. The Israeli secular state is a throwback of the communist regime. The state knows it has no power against the Torah. The state knows that in this Moshiach era it will soon cease to exist. We will blink and it will be gone.." Leah Amdur
"God did not bring Yisrael out of a land full of people with sinful ways and into a land full of people with righteous ways.
The ways of the land they were leaving (Mitzrayim) and the ways of the land to which they were going (Kena'an) were equally forbidden to Yisrael*.
And Yisrael was neither in Mitzrayim nor in Kena'an when God cut the b'rit with them and gave the Tora to them at Har Sinai (though Avra[ha]m was in Kena'an for the b'rit bein habetarim).
First God brought Yisrael out of the land of Mitzrayim.
Then God gave Yisrael the Tora outside of any nation's land.
Then God brought Yisrael into the land of Kena'an.
He did not just command Yisrael not to bring the ways of the land they were leaving to the land to which they were going. He did not just command Yisrael not to adopt the ways of the land to which they were going.
After Yisrael left Mitzrayim and before they even entered Kena'an, God equipped them with the ways they were to bring into the land of Kena'an with them from Sinai, and were to transform the land into Eretz Yisrael with.
Yisrael is not "west" or "east." Yisrael is not "crusader" or "jihadist." Yisrael is not "republican" or "democrat." Yisrael is not "Mitzrayim" or "Kena'an."
Yisrael is Yisrael, set apart from the nations and their ways, ALL of them".
* "And HaShem spoke to Moshe, saying: Speak to the children of Yisrael, and say to them: I am HaShem, your God. Like the practice of the land of Mitzrayim, in which you dwelled, you shall not do, and like the practice of the land of Kena'an, to which I am bringing you, you shall not do, and you shall not follow their statutes. You shall fulfill My ordinances and observe My statutes, to follow them. I am HaShem, your God. You shall observe My statutes and My ordinances, which a man shall do and live by them. I am HaShem..." (Vayikra 18:1-5) Nathaniel Feingold'
"To be honest their still is no homeland for HaShem's people. A great evil has gripped the world into hating us OR deceiving us.
People are deceived by thinking that they must not criticize Israel. For what reason? They say those who bless, will be blessed and those who curse will be cursed..."you don't want to be cursed right?" They do not see Zionism as political but prophetical... Who gave them such an idea??? Secular Jews who hate Torah. Zionism is just as much replacement theology as Catholic doctrine throughout the ages.
Another disturbing trend I see is how Evangelicals are swallowing Zionist deception whole hog. They don't support a bringing back of the Temple and the Sacrifices but only secularism in Israel... With Netan as their god. Before they stole all the promises themselves now they sell them to thieves.
In no way shape or form do we see support for families like these, they are treated like troublemakers by the state and thus the same by all the "supporters" who with the same breath will be passionately against Palestinian claims to the West Bank".
The state that exists today has one job... To stifle the efforts of HaShem's people to honor His name and follow all He told us to do.
Zionism is our golden calf below the mountain of HaShem". Moshe Span
"People worship the State far more than they do G-d. This is not in spite of the Religious Zionist education system (now controlled by Bennett) it is because of it. Zionism has become a Golden Calf and it is so absurd that people will actually DESTROY Israel and expel Jews from their homes in the name of Zionism. It's time to drain the swamp". Yaakov Fauci
"Agreed 100% we need a Torah revolution, ie returning to the original values we received at Sinai and compilated in the Mishne Torah. We are not there yet but that is the direction we have to strive for - and IF WE DO, then HaShem will help us"! Elisheva Barre
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B"H - We are at a historic juncture. The Jews have returned as a sovereign people onto the Land of Israel. Are we "possessing" the Land and "settling in" it as we should? No, we are not. From the exile we bought with us back to our homeland - the exile. This refers not only to our private mentality but also and mainly to our national institutions we established here in Israel: To our political parties, to our knesset, to our prime minister, to our supreme court, with other words, to the State of Israel: We established a non-Jewish State in Eretz Israel. None of the above mentioned are Torah institutions, so, instead of being a light onto the nations we insist to be a poor carbon copy of them. This Hellenistic and assimilationist drive must be overturned and we must re-establish our Jewish, Torah institutions on THE Land G-d gave us for a specific purpose, to allow us to be His Holy Nation on His Holy Land, a show-case as it were to humanity on how to build and on how to run a perfect society. This is why we urgently need the Beit Hamikdash on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem to be run by a Cohen Gadol, a Jewish king with his two Torah scrolls to run the executive, the Sanhedrin and just Courts of Law in every village to administer justice. These are our prescribed Torah institutions we are told to run in Eretz Israel, on our G-g given Holy Land. We must re-establish our territorial integrity and re-apply halacha (Jewish Law) regarding all aspects of life, including some hot issues, like the status of the non-Jewish population within the Land. The idea behind this page is to promote the Authentic Jewish Mission against all liberal, reformed and deformed so called judaisms and as such it requires your support. Let's stand up for our Torah by doing ALL the applicable mitzvot individually and as a nation and not allow Zionism to disfigure Judaism: They are NOT one and the same thing: Judaism worships Hashem, Zionism "the renaissance of the Jewish People": A self-serving, reform, anti-Torah distortion!