A Monsey-based publication named Lohud had come under fire this week for featuring an antisemitic ad that was hateful and hurtful towards Jews.
The ad cartoon depicted an image of a puppet-master representing a Rabbi, who is manipulating what appear to be children on top of a pile of cash. The headline next to the ad says: Rabbi holds the strings on $76M for East Ramapo School District. Soon after it was released, the Agudath Israel demanded an apology from the paper.
On Thursday, the large Rockland County newspaper put out the following statement on its website:
“On Monday, we posted a promotional illustration on Lohud’s social media channels whose words and imagery unintentionally featured an antisemitic trope.
Within an hour, we deleted the posts containing the illustration, which was promoting an upcoming investigative story, after a reader contacted us pointing out this hurtful choice of imagery.
Members of our team, including myself, did not recognize the stereotype that degrades and demeans Jews in the image and accompanying language. We’re deeply sorry this passed our review.
We condemn all forms of antisemitism in all ways that it is expressed.
We are grateful to all who sought to educate us on the history and hate behind the image.
The illustration we removed had listed a publication date for the investigative story this week. Please know we have shifted that date as we review the story’s visual elements.
The story focuses on the East Ramapo school district and raises questions about how officials have chosen to allocate millions of dollars in public funds to a nonprofit entity.
In this case and in all of our investigations, we are driven by our First Amendment duty to pursue matters of public interest and to hold leaders and institutions accountable through our reporting.
In the coming days, we will reflect on our misstep over the illustration and engage in considerable outreach and listening with local Jewish communities. Yet we cannot and will not let this unfortunate incident distract us from providing the quality journalism meant to address issues serving our readers. When news reporters dig deeply, it only helps our communities thrive.”