US talkshow host and actor Whoopi Goldberg has been suspended from The View for two weeks for saying the Holocaust “isn’t about race” on Monday’s episode.
Her suspension from the The View was announced in a statement released by US network ABC News on Tuesday night, after Goldberg issued a public apology.
“Effective immediately, I am suspending Whoopi Goldberg for two weeks for her wrong and hurtful comments,” Kim Godwin, president of ABC News, wrote in the statement.
“While Whoopi has apologised, I’ve asked her to take time to reflect and learn about the impact of her comments. The entire ABC News organisation stands in solidarity with our Jewish colleagues, friends, family and communities.”
Goldberg has yet to comment on her suspension.
Variety reported that the decision to suspend Goldberg was made in consultation with the highest tiers of management at Disney, which owns ABC News.
“Let’s be truthful, the Holocaust isn’t about race, it’s not. It’s about man’s inhumanity to man, that’s what it’s about. These are two groups of white people,” she said on The View on Monday.
She continued: “You’re missing the point … let’s talk about it for what it really is. It’s about how people treat each other. It’s a problem. It doesn’t matter if you’re black or white, Jews … everybody eats each other.”
The Auschwitz Memorial and StopAntisemitism.org are among organisations that have condemned her comments, with Jonathan Greenblatt from the Anti-Defamation League calling her comments “dangerous”.
The Nazis regarded Jewish people as an inferior race, and a threat to Aryan Germans. Racist ideology was used to justify the annihilation of anyone with Jewish heritage, regardless of their religious belief and practice. Hitler himself described Jewish people as a race, not a religion, in Mein Kampf.
In a statement posted on Twitter the same day, Goldberg offered her “sincerest apologies”. She wrote: “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 … I stand corrected.
“The Jewish people around the world have always had my support and that will never (waver). I am sorry for the hurt I have caused.”
After her apology, Greenblatt publicly thanked Goldberg for “acknowledging the Holocaust for what it was”. He then appeared with Goldberg during the start of Tuesday’s episode of The View, during which she again apologised.