Whoopi Goldberg Attempts to Walk Back Her 'Dangerous' Holocaust Comments Hours Later
After her Monday comment dismissing the Holocaust as “not about race” launched a storm of protest, Whoopi Goldberg was forced to issue an apology while later defending her views in a late-night TV interview.
During the ABC show “The View” on Monday, the hosts discussed the Holocaust-themed graphic novel “Maus.”
“The Holocaust isn’t about race. No, it’s not about race,” Goldberg said, repeating herself until she had managed to talk over everyone else. “It’s about man’s inhumanity to man.”
Co-host Ana Navarro disagreed, claiming the Holocaust was “about white supremacy. It’s about going after Jews and Gypsies …”
Sparks fly as The View panel confronts Whoopi after she says “the Holocaust isn’t about race. No. It’s not about race.”
“Well, the considered Jews a different race,” Joy Behar says.
“But it’s about white supremacy. It’s about going after Jews and Gypsies,” Ana Navarro adds. pic.twitter.com/GZwZSi2qXi
— Nicholas Fondacaro (@NickFondacaro) January 31, 2022
“But these are two groups of white people,” Goldberg said.
“You’re missing the point. The minute you turn it into race, it goes down this alley. Let’s talk about it for what it is. It’s how people treat each other. It’s a problem. It doesn’t matter if you’re black or white because black, white, Jews, Italians, everybody eats each other,” she said.
Goldberg was criticized for the comments, including by Jonathan Greenblatt, chief executive officer of the Anti-Defamation League, who wrote a Twitter post saying “Holocaust distortion is dangerous.”
No @WhoopiGoldberg, the #Holocaust was about the Nazi’s systematic annihilation of the Jewish people – who they deemed to be an inferior race. They dehumanized them and used this racist propaganda to justify slaughtering 6 million Jews. Holocaust distortion is dangerous. #ENOUGH https://t.co/koS1kuspqV
— Jonathan Greenblatt (@JGreenblattADL) January 31, 2022
Whoopi Goldberg’s Ignorance About The Holocaust Is What Happens When Intersectionality Rots People’s Brainshttps://t.co/GvtU0pwXZn
— The Federalist (@FDRLST) February 1, 2022
Sharon Osbourne was fired from The Talk for defending me against a fake charge of racism.
Whoopi Goldberg said on The View yesterday that the Holocaust ‘wasn’t about race’, which for Jewish people is about as racist a comment as anyone could make.
Bet she doesn’t lose her job.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) February 1, 2022
Liora Rez, executive director of watchdog group StopAntisemitism, called Goldberg’s comments “reprehensible,”
“I am the granddaughter of Holocaust survivors on both sides of my family,” she said, according to the New York Post. “To say that the Holocaust was not about race when everything the Nazis did was to ensure the purity of the Aryan race is blatantly untrue, and it is reprehensible.
“Six million Jews were gassed, starved and massacred because we were deemed an inferior race. For Goldberg to minimize our trauma and suffering by claiming we are from a privileged class is the epitome of whitewashing and gaslighting Jews, and it needs to stop.”
Goldberg’s “sincerest apologies” on Twitter followed hours later.
“On Today’s show, I said the Holocaust ‘is not about race, but about man’s inhumanity to man.’ I should have said it is about both,” Goldberg said in the statement.
— Whoopi Goldberg (@WhoopiGoldberg) February 1, 2022
“As Jonathan Greenblatt from the Anti-Defamation League shared, ‘The Holocaust was about the Nazi’s systematic annihilation of the Jewish people — who they deemed to be an inferior race.’ I stand corrected,” she wrote.
“The Jewish people around the world have always had my support and that will never waiver. I’m sorry for the hurt I have caused.
“Written with my sincerest apologies, Whoopi Goldberg.”
.@WhoopiGoldberg while I appreciate your apology I think you are missing the point. First of all, *Jews are not white*!!! If a Black Jew or Middle Eastern Jew was in the Colleyville synagogue, they would have been held hostage all the same. https://t.co/SZbsyE7zPi
— Daniel Koren (@Dani_Sababa) February 1, 2022
In an interview later Monday on “The Late Show with Steven Colbert,” Goldberg indicated that skin color is the only form of racism she knows, saying, “as a black person, I think of race as being something that I can see.”
“When you talk about being a racist, you can’t call this racism,” she said, according to the U.K. Daily Mail. “This was evil. This wasn’t based on skin. You couldn’t tell who was Jewish. You had to delve deeply and figure it out. My point is: They had to do the work.”
“If the Klan is coming down the street and I’m standing with a Jewish friend, I’m going to run, but if my friend decides not to run, they’ll get passed by most times because you can’t tell who is Jewish. You don’t know,” she said.
According to the Post, Goldberg, who has a long history of inflammatory comments, maintained Jews were not targeted in the Holocaust based on “race.”
The Nazis, she said, “had issues with ethnicity, not with race, because most of the Nazis were white people and most of the people they were attacking were white people, so to me, I’m thinking. ‘How can you say it’s about race when you are fighting each other?'” she said.
Time will tell if her apology — and explanations — prove to be enough.
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