Courtesy of CNN
The Business Insider, a popular business-focused news website, posted a curious headline on its site: “Why Do Some People Hate Jews?”
Tuesday’s headline and accompanying blog post, from Business Insider CEO and Editor-in-Chief Henry Blodget, wound up turning a lot of heads. The avalanche of response and criticism prompted Blodget – a high-profile former Wall Street analyst – to revise his headline and offer explanations/defenses of his post throughout the day.
“Along with many other sites, this site is occasionally visited by people whose mission in life appears to be to express hatred of Jews,” Blodget wrote in his original post. “And hatred of Jews has obviously been an ongoing theme worldwide for centuries.
“What is the source of this animosity? Why does it perpetuate itself? Where did this prejudice come from?”
The query drew plenty of tongue wagging from many corners of the Internet. “That’s right, there sure is nowhere better to suss out the reasoning behind one of the greatest attempted genocides of our modern times than in an Internet comments section,” Mediaite jested in a post that seethed disapproval.
“Is this how websites get traffic now?” Mediaite writer Jon Bershad continued. “Should Mediaite’s next slideshow be ‘Top 10 Stereotypes About Black People’?”
Later Tuesday, Blodget updated his piece with a new headline, “What Are the Sources of Anti-Semitism?” explaining the initial headline “made a lot of people angry … (s)o I changed it.”
Blodget also subbed out the original photo, which he characterized as featuring a pair of “jovial Orthodox Jews,” with a picture of Jewish actress Natalie Portman. He wrote that some readers found the original photo “needlessly provocative.”
By day’s end, Blodget offered his seventh update, saying that he wish he’d never published the piece. “Whatever interesting responses came from the post, I now regret writing it,” Blodget wrote. “I am very sorry to anyone I offended. I sincerely apologize.”