Giffnock Jews attacked on Facebook

By Jennifer Lipman, September 8, 2011

A Facebook page has been set up mocking the Jewish community of Giffnock in Glasgow.

The page, which has attracted nearly 1,000 "likes", is called "Welcome to Israel, only kidding you're in Giffnock".

Under the information given for the page, the creator wrote: "They have a Gaelic translation in the train station, Hebrew would have been more appropriate."

A photo posted as the profile picture of the page features the late Rev Ernest Levy, a Holocaust survivor and Glasgow communal leader.

Fans of the page have posted comments including "Jewish scum" and "F*** the Jewish Zionist".

One person, who joked about his "Holocaust ring", commented: "Hebrew is not needed in the train station [because] all the Jews are f***ing rich c**** they have gold plated Bentleys".

Marc Livingston, a trainee lawyer who grew up in Giffnock, described it as offensive and suggested it was the work of "stupid kids who think they can get away with it".

He said he had always found his hometown comfortable, but was concerned that almost nobody on the page had criticised it.

"In other words almost a thousand people have no problem with these phrases," he said, adding that he urged people to report the abusive content on the page to Facebook.

Last month a Jewish student at St Andrews who was racially abused in his bedroom said he felt "unsafe" in the town.

Stewart Maxwell, the SNP MSP for West Scotland condemned the page as completely unacceptable and said such "bigoted remarks" were highly distasteful. He said he had reported the page to Facebook and also called for the Strathclyde Police chief contable to investigate it.

"I am very concerned that people are expressing these views, particularly as they do not reflect the opinion of the East Renfrewshire population who are tolerant and respectful of people from all religions and races," he said.

"The Jewish community of Giffnock is a valued part of Scottish society, and the disgraceful comments posted on Facebook will never detract from this fact.

"No one should have to suffer these abusive comments, especially in a public forum."

Last updated: 3:29pm, September 9 2011