Whoopi Goldberg says she never intended her recent interview remarks about Jewish identity and the Holocaust — which were criticized by Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt — to give the impression that she was “doubling down” on previous “hurtful” remarks that resulted in her being temporarily suspended from her moderator role on ABC’s The view.
In a statement sent Tuesday to The Hollywood ReporterGoldberg noted that her recent remarks, made during the press in London, were an attempt to “convey to the reporter what I had said and why and tried to tell that time.” However, she said, “It was never my intention to give the impression that I was doubling down on hurtful comments,” especially after I “talked to the likes of rabbis and friends old and new and heard them weighed in.”
“I’m still learning a lot and believe me, I’ve heard everything everyone said to me. I believe the holocaust was about race, and I am as sorry now as I was then for upsetting, hurting, and angering people. My sincerest apologies again, especially to anyone who thought this was another repetition of the topic. I promise it wasn’t,” she added. “In this time of rising anti-Semitism, I want to be very clear when I say that I have always stood with the Jewish people and always will. My support for them has not wavered and never will.”
Goldberg’s statement follows Greenblatt’s own response earlier Tuesday, in which he called for the Display host to apologize. The ADL CEO said the interview comments of the actor and TV presenter, which were published in a recent publication Sunday Times profile, were “deeply offensive and incredibly ignorant” in a Twitter after.
“In addition, Whoopi’s comments show a complete lack of awareness of the multi-ethnic, multi-racial makeup of the Jewish community,” he wrote. “She needs to apologize immediately and actually commit to educating herself about the true nature of #anti-Semitism.”
In his social post, Greenblatt said that when Goldberg “made similar comments earlier this year, we were explaining how the Nazi regime was inherently racist.”
The extensive interview with the UK outlet published on Saturday was mainly focused on the making of Until, the drama that follows the journey of Emmett Till’s mother, Mamie, in her fight for justice after the murder of her son. But Goldberg also spoke about her experiences as a black woman in Hollywood, canceling culture and making comments that seemed to show a fundamental misunderstanding of what it means to be a trans woman and a trans man.
When speaking of Until, Goldberg compared the process and experience to that of “Otto Frank publishing his daughter Anne’s diaries,” according to the Sunday Timesand also drew comparisons at the end of Fiddler on the roofWritten as a musical by Joseph Stein and based on the Tevye stories by Sholem Aleichem (née Solomon J. Rabinowitz).
That’s when Goldberg and reporter Janice Turner started a discussion that sparked the Display host repeats past feelings shared on the talk show and beyond The Late Show With Stephen Colbert early 2022 on the origins of the Holocaust and whether the Jewish people can be considered a race. “My best friend said, ‘It’s not for nothing that there’s no box on the census for the Jewish race. So that leads me to believe we’re probably not a race,” said Goldberg.
She further argued that the Holocaust was “not originally” about Jewish people, telling the outlet that the Nazis initially targeted those “considered mentally defective”. When Turner backtracked, noting that Nazis “viewed Jews as a race” and “measured the heads and noses of Jews to ‘prove’ they were a separate race,” Goldberg replied, “Yeah, but that’s the killer, isn’t it? ?” the? The oppressor tells you what you are. Why do you believe them? They are Nazis. Why believe what they say?”
“They did the same with black people,” she added. ‘But that doesn’t change the fact that you couldn’t say it to a Jew on the street. You could find me. You couldn’t find them. That was the point I was making. But you would have thought I took a big, old, smelly mess on the table, naked.
In early February, Goldberg apologized for her earlier comments that the Holocaust was “not about race” but merely “man’s inhumanity to man” — while also describing the global Jewish population as white — in a segment with Greenblatt on The view. “Yesterday on the show, I was mistaken,” Goldberg said at the time. “[The Holocaust] is indeed about race, because Hitler and the Nazis considered the Jews an inferior race. Now, words are important, and mine are no exception. I regret my comments and I stand corrected. I also support the Jewish people.”