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  • October 31, 2017

In an October 30 letter to the Editor of the Greeley Tribune, Anti-Defamation League Mountain States Regional Director Scott L. Levin explained why the Tribune’s decision to run a front page story that seemingly glorifies an individual who dresses up in a Nazi costume for Halloween is both offensive and disturbing.




The Greeley Tribune’s decision to run a front-page article on an individual who has re-created a Nazi soldier’s uniform is disconcerting. The decision to graphically illustrate the story with dripping blood and blood splatters is outright offensive and disturbing.

We certainly understand the human-interest aspect of the Halloween industry and those who go through great creative effort to portray characters at haunted houses and corn mazes. There is a distinction, however, between profiling someone who has based his costume on a wholly fantastical, fictional character, such as a zombie, witch or monster, and someone who has based his costume on a historically based character, such as a Nazi soldier that was part of a killing machine that murdered 6 million Jews and 5 million others that the Nazis deemed undesirable.

The individual profiled in the story appears to revel in the villainous nature of the character he portrays and does not seek to promote Nazi ideology; however, we understand why so many have expressed concern about glorifying a Nazi character at a time in which white supremacists have taken to streets and college campuses across the United States with renewed fervor. Portrayals of Nazis and Nazi-inspired characters are best done in a critical context and not for pure entertainment or shock value.

The Tribune’s editorial and design decision was in bad taste. The Tribune should have recognized this would be offensive and hurtful to the Holocaust survivors, family members of survivors and decent military personnel who call northern Colorado home.

Scott L. Levin, regional director of the Anti-Defamation League Mountain States Region