A Swedish, Jewish journalist shared what appeared to be a horrific edit to her identification. The photo was warped to have a longer, hooked nose.
Annika Henroth-Rothstein, a 38-year old journalist, went to a police station near Stockholm, Sweden to update her identification.
When she was handed back her new ID, she was shocked.
Went to get a new National ID card & passport at a police station in #Sweden, handing in employment papers from an Israeli newspaper as well as proof of ID with 2 very Jewish names (while wearing a Magen David btw). Got back my ID and my nose has been doctored as seen below. pic.twitter.com/YF6wfOOaAg— Annika H Rothstein (@truthandfiction) December 7, 2019
Rothstein felt the officers knew she was Jewish, as she was wearing a Star of David and her employment papers listed her working for an Israeli newspaper.
She told Metro UK:
“I did a double-take when I got the ID but I actually left with it and didn’t say anything because I felt really scared and uncomfortable.”
The hooked nose has been an anti-Semitic trope for centuries, and if this was intentional, comes from a long history of horrific bigotry.
Also please sue them for 500 million euro.— Ron M. (@Jewtastic) December 7, 2019
Horrendous! So sorry you have to put up with this. I hope you'll find the time and the energy to file a complaint.— racine75 (@racine75) December 7, 2019
Did you read the hateful comments she is now forced to suffer simply because she was brave enough to share this. I commented and I am sickened by the responses I got.— Tara 💙🇮🇱💙👁🗨 🇿️#NeverAgainIsNow (@irishzionist) December 8, 2019
So sorry to hear about this terrible experience.— sax zim bog (@saxzimbog) December 7, 2019
Surely there's a way to petition government/police & figure out who exactly is responsible?
Rothstein received a lot of comments of support, but also anti-Semitic vitriol. Many comments and responses made horrible comparisons and comments on her heritage.
She wasn’t sure about complaining about it at first saying:
“I showed it to my non-Jewish friend today and he said it made him sick and I had to say something. And now I’m glad I did and I’ll file a complaint because I feel encouraged by the fact that I’m not the only one seeing the anti-Semitism in this.”
Swedish police have acknowledged that it is possible to edit their photos and are investigating this situation.
“As a Jew, sometimes you’re scared to sound the alarm on these things because inevitably people will say ‘that’s a technical error’ or ‘you Jews are seeing anti-Semitism everywhere’, but this seems pretty blatant.”
🧵 The comments on this is why I waited to say something about this ID. I felt scared & kinda dirty when seeing it, but accepted the ID, went home & put it in a box never to be used. Today I showed it to a non-Jewish friend & he got so upset & sickened that I ended up posting it https://t.co/q8IXJSkGtV— Annika H Rothstein (@truthandfiction) December 7, 2019
And the reason we don’t make shit like this up is because opening your mouth is hardly ever worth the cost in the form of hatred, ridicule and vitriol received. But yeah, this may be “only a picture” but it made me feel like even government personnel can be trusted— Annika H Rothstein (@truthandfiction) December 7, 2019
Seeing comments on this post saying A: that this is a computer glitch and B: that I’m blatantly lying by about this & it pisses me off tbh. If risk my credibility by faking my own ID? Also - if this was a glitch the ppl checking it before handing it over must be blind imho https://t.co/q8IXJSkGtV pic.twitter.com/qjKao2n9cB— Annika H Rothstein (@truthandfiction) December 7, 2019
So, about that “technical error” possibility.
It’s hard to say if this instance was intentional or not, we’ll have to wait for the Swedish police on that, but the idea that this is a technical error is more than possible.
It has some evidence backing it up.
Twitter user Markus Hankins collected some responses showing the same glitch from Swedish identifications.
The first shows another woman with the same issue, explaining it comes from the nose and upper lip being blurred together.
The second comes from another Twitter user who had an unfortunate result on his ID.
Det är kontrastinställningarna när de trycker korten. Själv blev jag lite Hitler på mitt... pic.twitter.com/f8zJpa6nn6— Henrik Schornack (@HenrikSchornack) December 7, 2019
“It’s the contrast settings when they print the cards. I myself became a little Hitler on mine…”
Other users shared their own problems with the Swedish ID card printer.
This is indeed... fiction— Adrian Repetto (@RepettoAdrian) December 7, 2019
Maybe you should have checked your facts before writing this. Understand the upset, but there is a perfectly good explanation. This is just how they look, read the explanation from Emanuel Karlsten. This is my picture, same thing. pic.twitter.com/DFQpoGcymp— Elin Öhlund Svensson (@elinannaregina) December 8, 2019
Based on this, it’s likely something wrong with the printer used, but this is for identification cards. The whole point of a photo ID is that it looks like you.
If there is enough of a problem that the photo can come out with this kind of excessive error, the Swedish government will need to replace the problem software or hardware to prevent this from happening again.
While it might not be targeting Jewish people, the fact is they shouldn’t have to worry about this happening to them.