Tony Ortega’s Wife Arielle Silverstein: Still Sponsoring Hate After All These Years?

The UN employee continues her antireligious extremism by bankrolling her antireligious blogger husband.

Arielle Silverstein and her husband Tony Ortega
Arielle Silverstein and her husband Tony Ortega

Sporadically employed hate blogger Tony Ortega apparently continues to live off the charity of a handful of antireligious bigots, one of them his wife Arielle Silverstein. The deal is he gets enough money to support his habits and they get a ready mouthpiece for their hate-filled rants.

Silverstein, an employee of the United Nations, went to great lengths in 2012 to scrub the Internet clean of her fanatical antireligious postings attacking Muslims, Jews, Christians, Scientologists and those of other religions. She didn’t scrub fast enough and the evidence showed Silverstein, who calls herself a Jewish atheist, to be a hardline bigot, which explains her willingness to prop up husband and fellow atheist Tony Ortega’s antireligious fanaticism.

They met in July 2011 in New York when they were both members of the hate collective known as Anonymous. Known to law enforcement as a cyberterrorist organization, Anonymous had mounted hate campaigns against multiple religions as well as government agencies and corporations. Tactics ranged from spreading obscenities and degraded imagery to conducting massive cyberattacks to render websites inaccessible. Members infested the Internet with postings encouraging suicide and murder and engaged in more conventional forms of harassment including bomb threats and vandalism. The group mindset was reflected in a manifesto statement: “Right or wrong? No. We destroy for destruction’s sake.”

Arielle Silverstein and Tony Ortega joined NY Anonymous members and supported their vulgar, antireligious harassment in which they hurled abusive and obscene insults at individual Church members. Silverstein posted, “I love NY anons” and “I’m very friendly with some of them.”
Arielle Silverstein and Tony Ortega joined NY Anonymous members and supported their vulgar, antireligious harassment in which they hurled abusive and obscene insults at individual Church members. Silverstein posted, “I love NY anons” and “I’m very friendly with some of them.”

Silverstein joined an Anonymous forum under the alias of “Bozuri,” announcing: “[I] like nothing more than explaining to religious people why I dislike God.” In racist and antireligious postings, she went on to name-call the religiously devout, including “Hispanic preachers” as “wackos” and “crazy,” ultra-Orthodox Jews as “cults,” and Christians as “Suckers!”

Following the lead of Ortega, Silverstein also involved herself in Anonymous attacks on the Church of Scientology and promoted the local New York Anonymous website, the since-removed Motherf— The site carried videos of Anonymous members harassing Scientologists outside their Church in Manhattan. “I love NY anons,” Silverstein wrote of their videos, in which extremists hurled hate speech at individuals, insulting them as “ugly,” “fat,” “stupid asshole” and much worse. Silverstein praised their record of repeated attacks on the Church as “absolutely incredible.”

Silverstein was reported to her UN employer for inciting bigotry from within UN HQ walls in express violation of UN policy. She reportedly managed to pass off her incendiary antireligious posts and images as “jokes.” At the time, in a case of the proverbial fox in the henhouse, Silverstein was in a position to gain immunity from her serious violations of UN staff rules: She was working in the UN’s Management Evaluation Unit—the body charged with reviewing internal discipline of UN staff.

Against this background of hate and bias, an August 2023 airing of 60 Minutes Australia introduced Tony Ortega as a journalist, and as an expert on religion rather than the more accurate religious hatemonger. Reporter Tara Brown blithely represented this blatant and proven liar as a credible source in what certainly was a gross disservice to her audience.

This is the same Tony Ortega who in a Spring 2020 blog added to a long record of deriding religions and the religiously devout and seized the opportunity to publish his 13-part takedown of the “damn” Bible. As many Americans sought solace in religion in response to the losses of loved ones to Covid-19, Ortega mocked the devout for “buying” passages in the Old Testament and proclaimed God a “conniving, underhanded and petty biatch” and “small-minded wanker.”

And this is the same Tony Ortega who revealed how low he could go in his last steady journalism job as editor of The Village Voice. It was here that Ortega gained notoriety as the vocal defender and victim-shamer for the highly lucrative child sex trafficking business on the classified advertising site The site, eventually shut down by the feds in 2018, was the revenue engine for Village Voice Media (VVM), which published the Voice and a chain of other alternative weekly tabloid newspapers. was cofounded in 2004 by VVM’s owners, Michael Lacey and James Larkin, who had employed Ortega at their weeklies since the mid-1990s. Ortega answered to the pair who dropped him into his final newspaper, the Voice, as editor in chief in early 2007.

Over the next several years, as grew into a hundred-million-dollar-a-year enterprise, Ortega, like the entire VVM empire, thrived off Backpage revenue—more than 90 percent of which came from its “adult” ads. “The people I work for were smart enough to start,” Ortega said in 2011, as evidence mounted of pimps being allowed to traffic underage girls through its listings.

As and VVM came under increasing fire from law enforcement agencies, members of Congress, journalists, human rights and religious organizations—the Church of Scientology in particular took the lead in shedding public light on Tony Ortega as a chief enabler through his role with VVM. While ostensibly editing The Village Voice, he neglected the paper and wrote hundreds of blogs vilifying Scientology.

Ortega used his position on behalf of to lash out with disinformation, scorning statistics of child sex trafficking as a “national fantasy” and a “mass panic.” He pilloried evidence that minors, some as young as 12, were being pimped through its listings, dehumanized the sex-enslaved children as “underage prostitutes” and victim-shamed them as “underage users” of Backpage who “violate our terms of use.”

And when he was finally fired in 2012 by Larkin and Lacey, he continued his unfounded attacks on Scientology and remains a propped-up propagandist to this day. An apologist for underage sex trafficking and a paid-off antireligious hatemonger.