Whoopi Goldberg, 66, offered a very sincere apology for saying that the Holocaust was “not about race” to start The View on Tuesday February 1. The co-host said that she “misspoke” during Monday’s episode while discussing a Tennessee schoolboard’s decision to ban Art Spiegelman’s Maus, a graphic novel about the Holocaust. The comic offered her support to the Jewish community and brought on Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt to discuss why comments like Whoopi’s are harmful.
After thanking people for holding her accountable, Whoopi went into detailed about how the Nazis and Adolf Hitler felt about Jews during the Holocaust, which led to the tragedy. “It is indeed about race, because Hitler and the Nazis considered Jews to be an inferior race. Now, words matter, and mine are no exception. I regret my comments, as I said, and I stand corrected. I also stand with the Jewish people, as they know and y’all know, because I’ve always done that,” she said.
Earlier in the discussion, Whoopi explained that people calling on her helped her learn more about why her comments were hurtful. “I said something that I feel a responsibility for not leaving unexamined, because my words upset so many people, which was never my intention, and I understand why now. For that, I am deeply, deeply grateful, because the information I got is really helpful and helped me understand some different things,” she said.
During Monday’s episode of The View, the Academy Award-winning actress received tons of backlash, after she said that the Holocaust was “not about race.” She said that it was rather about “man’s inhumanity to man.” That evening, she tweeted an apology. “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,” she wrote. “I stand corrected. 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.”
The ADL CEO then joined the show to explain how Hitler the Nazis’ actions were racially motivated, and how it had similarities to the South during the Jim Crow era. He also called on both Republicans and progressives to call out antisemitism when they see it. Jonathan also spoke about how representation is important, and he even suggested that The View consider bringing a Jewish person in to become a new addition to the table. “I know you guys believe in representation,” he said. “I know you’re considering a new host for the show, a permanent host. Think about having a Jewish host on the show, who can bring these issues of antisemitism, who can bring these issues of representation to The View every single day.