So, You’re Hosting Christopher Bollyn?
It’s ok. You probably didn’t know. But here is why you should know. And see below for the (always updated) Christopher Bollyn tour list.
Who is Christopher Bollyn?
He’s a right wing Southern Poverty Law Center designated “raging anti-Semite”. A former writer for the hate group, American Free Press. An neo-Nazi Willis Carto alumn. Bollyn has appeared with KKK “Grand Wizard” David Duke on his radio show.
Why should I care?
Christopher Bollyn is different because he uses “9/11 Truth” to trick left-wing, progressive spaces, progressive Churches, and other community centered spaces whose views are diametrically opposed to his right wing anti-Semitism.
What should I expect when my venue hosts Chris Bollyn?
You should expect someone with a fake name to reach you. Or Cathleen McGuire. Or Helje Bollyn. Or Helje Kaskel. Or someone that is not Bollyn and may never mention Bollyn. They’ll ask to rent a private space. Upon rental, they’ll publish it as if your institution is hosting him so as to hijack your good identity and mission to cover his.
At your space he will craft his views that sometimes use words like neocon and Zionism as cover, but will and often does shed the veneer for world Jews in general. Bollyn denies the Holocaust. Cites the infamous Protocols of the Elders of Zion forgery responsible for pogroms and genocide. Brands Jews as more similar to wolves than humans. Describes nearly all calamities from the assassination of JFK, to 9/11, to even the historic Italian-American Mafia as Jewish plots. He spares no Jews, citing pieces like “The Myth of the Good Jew”. For more, Dr. Spencer Sunshine has the more comprehensive recent analysis of Bollyn here.
What about free speech?
There are different schools of thought. When Chris Bollyn booked DC’s progressive bastion BusBoys & Poets, they booted him when we let them know, citing that it was counter to their mission.
Following BusBoys and our outreach to other groups, NYC’s famed Social Justice-centered WestPark Presbyterian Church followed. As did other justice workers like the prestigious Unitarian Society of Hartford and more.
New York’s Village Voice was similarly used. By paying to sponsor his event, he was then able to promote it as a Village Voice featured event, where he quotes his own words about himself but under the shine of another progressive institution.
One venue, the Brooklyn Commons, once known as a collaborative space for progressives, decided to host, feature, and defend him despite protests from nearly all their tenants, allies, and entire communities of progressives. Tenants from within the space responded with this statement, and some have started to leave the space permanently. Despite claiming free speech and inviting dissenters to engage with him, the owner, Melissa Ennen quietly removed the progressive mission from her website, and physically removed and abused dissenters with her staff, police, and what appeared to be Bollyn-associated goons. After digging, it turns out that Ennen’s own leadership within the 9/11 Truther community may be a factor.
The best coverage of this is by Daniel Sieradski here.
What if my mission is absolute free speech for everyone who asks?
Host him. And host opposing voices. But if you’re a progressive institution facing the rise of Trump, sexism, climate change, state violence, terrorism, bigotry, and the rapid redistribution of wealth from the poor and working class to the ultra rich, maybe you can rethink priorities for your limited space and energy, knowing that there are plenty of venues for Bollyn.
I don’t want him to use our name to spread hate, can I legally cancel?
Yes. If hate has no place in your institution or mission, you can cancel. If he wasn’t up front with content and identity, you can cancel him. You can also make your event and rental guidelines explicitly match your mission.
If your business or institution has been a target of Christopher Bollyn, let us know in the comments and we will be surprisingly resourceful in aiding you and protecting our valuable spaces and important work.
The (Always Updated) Christopher Bollyn Event List
Tell them about this article accessible via bollyn.org
Sept 11 | Scholz’s Biergarten Austin, Texas (Booked and Defended) Facebook · 512–474–1958
Prior to our work, Bollyn has successfully toured other community spaces including Andala Coffee House (Cambridge, MA) and Sawmill Theater (Payson, AZ). When he can’t, he targets public libraries and hotel meeting rooms in cities with strong progressive cultures. I don’t list public owned spaces or hotels here because I respect free speech, no matter what is being said. However, I intend to make sure we all know who he is as he tours our progressive spaces.
Important: When reaching these venues, be kind, considerate, and helpful, they are almost always simply agreeing to host a paid, private event they did not or could not research. Don’t permanently mark their Facebook reviews. Bollyn targeted them because they’re part of our community. Often, simply sending them this page bollyn.org leads to cancellation and a statement.