Student Gunman's Admiration for Hitler Reminder of Internet's Draw to Disaffected Youth
New York, NY, March 22, 2005 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today reacted to information that has come to light that Jeff Weise, the student implicated in the school shootings at Red Lake reservation in Minnesota, professed an admiration for Adolf Hitler and posted messages to a racist and anti-Semitic Web site.
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
It is unfortunate that Jeff Weise professed an admiration for Adolf Hitler. While we do not know what led him to commit this heinous act, too many young people, through the Internet and other means, have come to look at Hitler in an idealized way.
It is important for families and educators to be alert to signs that a child or student is incorporating hatred into their psyche. Too often, the warning signs are missed as disenfranchised young people are led down the path toward hatred and bigotry.
Unfortunately, as we have seen from Columbine and more recent violent acts of hate, many disaffected young people are finding outlets for their feelings on the Internet, where there are scores of Web sites devoted to praising Hitler and Nazi ideas. These sites are purposefully designed to lure young people to join an online community of likeminded racists, or even to recruit them into the hate movement.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.