Whoopi Goldberg has been suspended from her moderating slot on ABC’s The View after sharing a personal observation on the driving force behind the Nazi’s cruel and inhumane actions during the Holocaust.
While engaging in a heated discussion about a Tennessee school board’s recent decision to ban an award-winning graphic novel centering the Holocaust on Monday, Goldberg commented on the absurdity that officials were bothered by the depiction of nudity in the book, but somehow not about the subject matter of mass genocide.
“I mean, it’s about the Holocaust, the killing of 6 million people, but that didn’t bother you?” she said during the segment. “If you’re going to do this, then let’s be truthful about it. Because the Holocaust isn’t about race. No, it’s not about race.”
It is of note that Goldberg herself also identifies as Jewish.
When co-host Joy Behar chimed in to let Goldberg know that race was indeed a factor and the Jewish race was the target, she further explained.
“It’s about man’s inhumanity to man,” Goldberg said, clarifying that “this is about two groups of white people.”
She further explained her comments while appearing on The Colbert Report late Monday night, adding that “I feel, being Black, when we talk about race, it’s a very different thing to me.”
“When you talk about being a racist, you can’t call this racism. 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.”
On Tuesday, Goldberg opened The View with an apology, admitting that she “misspoke” when addressing the factor of race in the tragedy.
“I said something that I feel a responsibility for not leaving unexamined because my words upset so many people, which was never my intention,” she said. “I understand why now and for that, I am deeply, deeply grateful because the information I got was really helpful and helped me understand some different things.”
“Now, words matter, and mine are no exception,” she continued. “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.”
Still, the mea culpa seemed not to be enough for ABC executives. The decision was handed down late Tuesday evening that Goldberg would be penalized with two weeks away from The View desk, in order to “reflect and learn” about how comments like hers affect the Jewish community.
“Effective immediately, I am suspending Whoopi Goldberg for two weeks for her wrong and hurtful comments,” ABC News president Kimberly Godwin said in a statement late Tuesday evening. “While Whoopi has apologized, I’ve asked her to take time to reflect and learn about the impact of her comments. The entire ABC News organization stands in solidarity with our Jewish colleagues, friends, family, and communities.”
In an internal ABC memo sent after hours on Tuesday, Godwin expounded “these decisions are never easy, but necessary.”
“Whoopi has shown through her actions over many years that she understands the horrors of the Holocaust and she started today’s show with that recognition,” Godwin wrote. “But words matter and we must be cognizant of the impact our words have.”
At the time of publishing, Goldberg has issued no public comment on her suspension.