How Much Did YouTube and PayPal Make From Owen Benjamin’s Jew-Hatred?
by Dexter Van Zile
It happens every day, even on weekends.
Sometime in the late afternoon or early evening West Coast time, several thousand people log onto YouTube’s livestream service to watch a failed comedian rant about the Jews from his backyard in Gig Harbor, Washington. Sometimes he rants for less than an hour, but before he swore off drinking a few weeks ago, he would rant for more than three hours at a stretch.
As the comedian, who goes by the name of Owen Benjamin, rants about the evil, hate-worthy Jews who are responsible for all the problems of the world, his supporters make comments on YouTube’s live chat stream that vilify and demonize Jews. They type things like “With Jews You Lose,” “Jews became their own god,” “The bible is a jew scam,” “MUZZIES ARE PWNS OF JEWS,” and “BOLSHEVIK JEWS ZIONIST JEWS SAME CONTROL FREAKS.”
As far as what to do with the Jews, one commenter exhorted his fellows to “SODOMIZE THE JEWS INTO SUBMISSION.” Another barely literate commenter who probably had too much to drink typed, “may all jews asa be murdered, if nescessary, all of them, so nobody thinks anymore they are the h=cosen people anymore.” The typos are bad, but the message is clear. This guy wants Jews murdered en masse, just as they were in Pittsburgh last year.
Up until a few weeks ago, YouTube made money from allowing this type of rhetoric — which clearly violates the company’s terms of service — to be broadcast on its servers. To make sure their comments get Benjamin’s attention, the comedian’s supporters would pay money to have their comments highlighted as “superchats” on YouTube’s chatstream. The more Benjamin’s supporters paid, the longer their comments stay pinned to the top of the comment feed for the comedian to read and respond to. Most of the money went into Benjamin’s bank account, but YouTube kept 30 percent of the revenue off the top.
After the outcry over Benjamin’s Jew-baiting got too controversial, YouTube “demonetized” his account and stopped showing advertisements (which generated substantial income for both Youtube and Benjamin) during his videos. YouTube also shut off the “superchat” feature on Benjamin’s videos, costing him some serious money. According to Benjamin, the final check YouTube sent to him was worth close to $30,000, indicating that YouTube made more than $12,000 from approximately a month’s worth of Benjamin’s rants, which blame Jews, whom he describes as “the men in little hats,” as the source of all the evils present in modern America.
In a YouTube video titled “The Hidden Purpose of Pornography,” which streamed on March 10, 2019, Benjamin declared that Jews use pornography to destroy the masculine strength of American men so that they will be unable to father children and have the courage to protect their families from Jewish control. “It is literally by design so the West doesn’t have kids,” he said, adding later, “The Jews are only one percent of the population and yet they’re in control of the media, all of banking, pornography, opioids.”
He also declares Jews the most racist people on the planet who use the teachings of the Talmud to justify oppressing non-Jews. “So when I criticize the Jew, you realize I’m criticizing the most racist people on the planet who think that they can rape you, lie to you, and steal from you without any ramifications because they think they are genetically chosen when they’re not,” he said. “That’s why Jews end up being in charge of the most disgusting industries, pornography, opioids, war, media and Hollywood. And lawyers and doctors pushing nonsense vaccines and chopping dicks off.”
Benjamin promotes the notion that Jews seek to disrupt American family life by making women less attractive to men. “Homosexual Jews are the ones who run high fashion who say that a woman’s body should be like a little boy’s body,” he says.
Despite these statements, Benjamin would have us believe he doesn’t hate all Jews, just the bad ones. On March 21, 2019, he declared, “The Jews I don’t like are the ones that are lying all the time, trying to subvert and steal and corrupt.”
To give an air of credibility to his monstrous Jew-hatred, Benjamin often invokes the writings of E. Michael Jones, a Catholic antisemite who portrays Jews as the dread enemy of the Christian social order and of humanity itself.
In a challenging interview with Christian apologist Michael Brown, Jones declared that “The Jewish Problem came into existence over the course of the 19th century after Napoleon emancipated the Jews in France,” and that “There is a Jewish Problem; there is a Jewish Question; it is more urgent now than it was in 1890. It is much more serious now.”
Jones has appeared numerous times on Benjamin’s livestream, during which he is given free rein to demonize Jews. During one of these interviews, Jones declared, “Nothing has changed since St. Paul said the Jews are the people who killed Christ and they are the enemies of the entire human race. That is what we believe as Catholics, that is what the scripture says. That is our faith.”
Benjamin’s March 10, 2019 video is not exceptional in any way. He talks like this all the time. Every day. To growing numbers of subscribers on YouTube. In early April, he had 246,000 subscribers on his YouTube account. As of this writing, he has more than 253,000 subscribers. He has more than 500 videos on his YouTube account, many of them defaming Jews. He still has an Instagram account, which he used to broadcast hate, and a Twitter account to promote his “comedy.”
In the March 10, 2019 video mentioned above, Benjamin showed an image from a YouTube report that his viewers in the US had watched more than 49 million minutes’ worth of his videos in the previous 28 days.
Benjamin regularly warns his viewers to not engage in acts of violence because “to strike the Jew,” as he says, would only serve the interests of Jewish power. Nevertheless, the story he tells to his viewers on YouTube does serve to legitimize violent attacks against Jews. He is mainstreaming the message that has come from marginal organizations or outlets such as National Vanguard or even the KKK. And he’s doing it for money with mainstream internet companies getting a cut.
When YouTube laudably “de-monetized” Benjamin’s account a few weeks back, the comedian told his followers to send him money via PayPal, the internet banking service that allows people to send messages along with funds. And when PayPal prohibited Benjamin from using their service to finance his daily orgies of Jew-hatred, he encouraged his followers to migrate to another streaming service run by Vox Day, a science fiction writer whose ideology aligns with Benjamin’s.
Sadly, Benjamin’s exile to the Brownshirt District of the Internet has not been complete. Patreon, a respected mainstream internet company, still allows Benjamin to use their service to solicit funds from his viewers.
The fact that internet companies such as YouTube, PayPal, and Patreon have derived income from Benjamin’s Jew-hatred is inexcusable. There is nothing in the First Amendment that compels any of these companies to help Benjamin promote his hatred of the Jewish people, nor is there any justification for these companies to derive any profit whatsoever from Benjamin’s hate-filled rants.
We are confronted with two questions: How much profit have these companies derived from Benjamin’s antisemitic rants and what are they going to do with these ill-gotten gains?
Dexter Van Zile is the Christian Media Analyst for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting (CAMERA).