Anti-Defamation League updates definition of racism following Whoopi Goldberg controversy

Following Whoopi Goldberg’s recent controversy, where on “The View” she said the Holocaust was not necessarily about race, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) changed the definition of racism.

Goldberg was suspended for two weeks after she made the comments which sparked criticism from viewers and others alike.

On Monday’s episode of the talk show, Goldberg noted her point of view that the Holocaust “isn’t about race” while the panel of women discussed how a Tennessee school board decided to remove “Maus,” a Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel about the author’s parents’ experience during the Holocaust, from an eighth grade curriculum.

Co-host Joy Behar then asked Goldberg what the genocide was about, to which she responded, “It’s about man’s inhumanity to man.” Another co-host, Ana Navarro, then chimed in saying, “Well, it’s about white supremacy. That’s what it’s about.” 

Those comments from Goldberg sparked wide reaching backlash, and although she issued an apology on-air Tuesday, she is still facing a two week suspension from the network that hosts “The View,” ABC.

She did speak on the program with the CEO of the ADL Jonathan Greenblatt, who said that Goldberg’s comments were inaccurate and harmful.

Since then, the ADL has updated its definition of racism, now defining it as something that “occurs when individuals or institutions show more favorable evaluation or treatment of an individual or group based on race or ethnicity.” 

During an appearance with CNN’s Don Lemon on Tuesday evening, Greenblatt cautioned against unfairly condemning Goldberg. “We sometimes have people in public places who can say clumsy things about race or faith or gender. I don’t believe in cancel culture. I like the phrase that my friend Nick Cannon uses. We need ‘counsel culture,’” Greenblatt explained.

He continued by saying, “In the Jewish faith, Don, we have a concept called ‘teshuva,’ and ‘teshuva’ means redemption. It means all of us have the power to admit when we do wrong and commit to doing better. I heard Whoopi say that she’s committed to doing better. I accept that apology with the sincerity with which she delivered it.”

Greenblatt added, “I’m committed, ADL is committed, to work with her and to work with others who really want to use this as a teachable moment.” 




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