ADL CEO Rejects Whoopi Goldberg’s Holocaust Claims, But Did He Contradict ADL’s New Definition Of Racism?
WASHINGTON, DC, UNITED STATES - 2019/06/04: Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO & National Director, speaking at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) National Leadership Summit in Washington, DC.
Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

On Monday, CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, Jonathan Greenblatt, responded to Whoopi Goldberg’s argument that the Holocaust was “not about race,” but rather “man’s inhumanity to man.”

Greenblatt said that the Holocaust was undeniably related to race, but in doing so, he appeared to undermine the ADL’s own updated definition of racism.

“No [Whoopi Goldberg], the [Holocaust] was about the Nazi’s systematic annihilation of the Jewish people – who they deemed to be an inferior race,” responded Greenblatt on Twitter. “They dehumanized them and used this racist propaganda to justify slaughtering 6 million Jews. Holocaust distortion is dangerous. #ENOUGH”

“The Holocaust isn’t about race,” Goldberg said on Monday’s episode of ABC’s “The View.” “No, it’s not about race.”

“It’s not about race,” Goldberg said again, after fellow co-host Joy Behar responded, “Well, they considered Jews a different race.”

“It’s about man’s inhumanity to man, that’s what it’s about,” Goldberg argued.

“But it’s about a white supremacy, it’s about going after Jews and gypsies,” co-host Ana Navarro interjected.

“But these are two white groups of people,” Goldberg said as her colleagues disagreed. 

“You’re missing the point,” Goldberg added. “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, cause black, white, Jews, Italians, everybody eats each other.”

Greenblatt also appeared on Tuesday’s episode of “The View” to explain why the Holocaust was “about race.”

Now, Greenblatt is obviously correct in his rejection of Goldberg’s argument. Jews under the Nazi regime were indeed regarded as an “inferior” race, marked for elimination by the relentless racism of the Third Reich.

However, Greenblatt’s strong rejection of Goldberg’s rhetoric is somewhat confusing when we consider that his organization — the ADL — have altered their own definition of racism in a manner which dilutes the racism of anti-Semitism.

“Racism is the belief that a particular race is superior or inferior to another, that a person’s social and moral traits are predetermined by his or her inborn biological characteristics,” the ADL previously wrote of “racism.” This definition falls in line with Greenblatt’s condemnation of Goldberg’s position on the Holocaust.

But the ADL’s new definition of racism is as follows: “The marginalization and/or oppression of people of color based on a socially constructed racial hierarchy that privileges white people.”

And this definition is more in line with Goldberg’s initial claims than Greenblatt’s — with Goldberg having described the Holocaust as “white people doing it to white people.” After all, Jews are sporadically categorized as white when it is politically convenient, whether it be to disregard the growth of anti-Semitism among minority communities, or as part of the anti-Zionist movement. And when we consider the ADL’s latest definition of racism applying to “people of color,” and the fact that the vast majority of Jews murdered during the Holocaust were “white,” Goldberg’s contentions fall in line with the ADL.

This leaves us with two possible outcomes:

  1. The Holocaust was undeniably built upon the racism of anti-Semitism (as well as additional forms of racism against other minority groups), which broadly contradicts the ADL’s latest definition of racism.
  2. The ADL’s definition of racism is correct, and since Jews in Europe were almost entirely “white” and 1930s and 1940s Nazism was built on a Germanic form of white supremacy, the Holocaust was not “about race,” which was entirely Goldberg’s point.

Only one of these can be true, made worse by the fact that Greenblatt added — immediately after agreeing that the Holocaust was about race — that the notion of “racialized anti-Semitism” may “feel different” compared to the modern concept of racism “where primarily it’s about people of color.”

In many ways, both Goldberg and Greenblatt are arguably guilty of diluting anti-Semitism. The only difference is that Goldberg is focusing on 20th century Germany during the Holocaust, and Greenblatt is focusing on 21st century America.

The outcome, however, is ultimately the same.

Ian Haworth is an Editor and Writer for The Daily Wire. Follow him on Twitter at @ighaworth.

The views expressed in this opinion piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  ADL CEO Rejects Whoopi Goldberg’s Holocaust Claims, But Did He Contradict ADL’s New Definition Of Racism?