ABC has suspended Whoopi Goldberg from “The View” for two weeks over comments she made Monday claiming that the Holocaust had nothing to do with race.
“Effective immediately, I am suspending Whoopi Goldberg for two weeks for her wrong and hurtful comments. While Whoopi has apologized, I’ve asked her to take time to reflect and learn about the impact of her comments,” ABC News President Kim Godwin said in a statement, according to ABC News.
“The entire ABC News organization stands in solidarity with our Jewish colleagues, friends, family, and communities,” Godwin said.
Goldberg tried to stave off consequences for the remark with an apology on Tuesday’s show.
“Yesterday on our show, I misspoke. I tweeted about it last night but I want you to hear it from me directly,” she said on the air Tuesday, according to CNN.
“I said something that I feel a responsibility for not leaving unexamined, because my words upset so many people, which was never my intention. I understand why now, and for that I am deeply, deeply grateful because the information I got was really helpful, and it helped me understand some different things.
“I said the Holocaust wasn’t about race and was instead about man’s inhumanity to man,” Goldberg said.
“But it is indeed about race because Hitler and the Nazis considered Jews to be an inferior race,” she said.
That wasn’t her message Monday night on “The Late Show with Steven Colbert,” when 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 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.
When Colbert pointed out that the Nazis themselves considered the Holocaust a racial matter, many saw Goldberg’s response as doubling down.
“The Nazis lied,” she said. “They 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 if you are fighting each other?”
Those comments irked conservative commentator John Podhoretz.
“That’s nice that she thinks about it that way. But it’s monumentally ignorant, stupid and almost jaw-droppingly offensive,” Podhertz wrote in a column published by the New York Post Tuesday.
“Six million people literally died because that wasn’t how the people who killed them thought about race. And as for the ‘something Whoopi can see’ doctrine, let’s remember that Hitler’s goal was the extermination of all Jews on the planet — and then as now, there are millions of Sephardic Jews with skin hues that would not classify them as ‘white.’ Even Whoopi wouldn’t ‘see’ them that way,” he wrote.
“No, what Whoopi clearly meant was that the Jews she knows have light-colored skin, and the Jews she has seen in movies about the Holocaust have light-colored skin. Therefore they were ‘white.’ And since racism only involves black and white, they were also ‘white’ to the Nazis, and the genocide was a white-on-white genocide.”
Many on Twitter thought the suspension was not very much punishment at all.
Don’t criticize Whoopi’s suspension because people shouldn’t be suspended for controversial comments. Criticize it because it’s the network’s way of trying to worm out of any bad publicity it might cause for THEM. Even calling it a “suspension” is buying their cover story.
— Noam Blum (@neontaster) February 2, 2022
My care level about Whoopi Goldberg being suspended for two weeks approaches zero. She didn’t get fired. She’ll be back and we’ll never hear of this again. It’s a slap on the wrist when a Republican would have been fired already, especially after she doubled down on Colbert.
— Bonchie (@bonchieredstate) February 2, 2022
Whoopi Goldberg has been suspended from her role as presenter of US talk show The View for two weeks following her “wrong and hurtful comments”, that the Holocaust was “not about race”.
SO, it’s settled: We’re worth a 2 week slap on the wrist https://t.co/msRbFyGF1a
— Jack Mendel 🗞️ (@Mendelpol) February 2, 2022
Some within ABC were also seething, according to the U.K. Daily Mail.
“These comments are absolutely abhorrent and outrageous and it’s time Disney and ABC grew a pair and fired her,” the Daily Mail quoted a “a senior ABC source” as saying.
“There is a blind spot on ‘The View ‘when it comes to anti-Semitism. It is never a big enough hate crime for them.”
“ABC staffers and Disney Network execs are saying Whoopi went way too far. And board members are not happy with her apology and want a fuller retraction. The word is that Whoopi is in ‘deep s–t,’” Page Six quoted what it called “one ABC insider” it did not name as saying.
“Why does Whoopi seemingly get a pass when others don’t? Perhaps this time she won’t. Many at the network — including her fellow hosts — believe Whoopi is too controversial now for the show,” Page Six quoted its source as saying.
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