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Henry Ford's War on Jews and the Legal Battle Against Hate Speech$
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Victoria Saker Woeste

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780804772341

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804772341.001.0001

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(p.329) Conclusion
Henry Ford's War on Jews and the Legal Battle Against Hate Speech
Stanford University Press

Sapiro v. Ford left a number of unanswered questions, such as what jurors would have decided had the libel suit run its course. While a jury verdict and damage award might have been personally gratifying for Aaron Sapiro, they would have further alienated him from Louis Marshall and the Jewish civil rights establishment and probably caused a rift among Jews. The jurors appeared to be skeptic toward Henry Ford and the allegations against Sapiro, and aware that Sapiro had made mistakes and that the cooperative movement was flawed. However, they rejected the notion that a conspiracy was responsible for the farmers' misfortunes. The case should have ended Ford's public career, but his apology bought him viability. Anti-Semitism persisted in American society as an acceptable, respectable prejudice after Sapiro v. Ford. Nevertheless, the case displayed Sapiro's heroism and bravery in confronting a national bully like Ford and Marshall's hope that the apology he wrote for Ford would create a permanent place for immigrant Jews in America's industrial future.

Keywords:   Sapiro v. Ford, libel, Aaron Sapiro, Louis Marshall, Jews, Henry Ford, farmers, anti-Semitism, civil rights

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