When I was a kid, I hated report card day. We would stop at my home room and that teacher always said very positive things about me, mostly because she never had to teach me anything. Every marking period with an open house, there would be a note from each teacher wanting to see my parent or guardian. Usually, I would try to negotiate with my parents to make it quick. I’d say, we can stop at home room and see my gym teacher and skip the wait for the rest of those teachers that weren’t going to add to their day. For some reason, they never listened to me. Year after year these teachers would tell them how intelligent I was, how well behaved I was most of the time, how well I did on tests, a joy to have in class and all that, then ruin it with talking about homework. Because I was allergic to turning in homework they couldn’t in good conscience give me a higher grade. Ridiculous right? However, despite knowing the plot twist, my parents still spoke to every teacher…every time.
My sister had a different issue. Report card day for her was the best day of the quarter for negotiating for stuff. She was a straight A student, worked hard and all. The teachers always requested to see our parents too, but usually to pat them on the back for doing such a great job with her. They rarely wanted to go to see those teachers at all. I know what you may be thinking “Doug, if you didn’t want your teachers blabbing to your folks, should’ve done your homework” and that may very well be true, but 20/20 was hindsight year after year for me. I was simply trying to avoid a clear waste of time. I sought to point out any double standard that worked in my favor, such as, “both sets of teachers want to see you, just don’t feel obliged to see any of them”. I’m sure they skipped seeing my sister’s teachers a couple times, just to save energy to see mine. Now that I’m older I can see the value in doing ones homework. It’s one thing to be able to figure it out, but it won’t all make sense until the homework is also done.
Let Me Get This Right
Recently I watched Kanye West and Kyrie Irving get stripped of everything because of alleged antisemitic views. I listened to what both said, and neither of them said anything that was truly “Anti” Semitic in my literal understanding of this term. To be clear, Anti means opposed to, or against; while Semitic means relating to the people who speak Semitic languages, mainly Hebrew and Arabic in the modern era. By definition, neither of them said anything antisemitic. However, since the term is used now to be anything, fact, or falsehood about, but viewed unfavorably by Jewish people, their comments or stances are perceived as antisemitic. In essence, if you are not Jewish, don’t say anything about Jewish people at all because what constitutes antisemitism is not what is said, nor technical applicability, but rather how it is interpreted. Also, you can’t expect anyone to defend you or speak on your behalf publicly, because then they’d be lumped in as antisemitic and stripped of their livelihood as well.
You all may already know, I’m not a fan of Kanye. In Kanye’s case, and I’m getting this directly from the ADL so I’m clear, his antisemitic remarks were labeling it as and blaming the “Jewish Media” or “Jewish Zionists” for various misdeeds. He then goes on to say “Jewish people own the Black voice” and “the Jewish community, especially in the music industry will milk us til we die”, he also stated that he’s “#me tooing the Jewish culture. Y’all gotta stand up and admit what you been doing”. Those are the main words that Kanye spoke, that the ADL took issue with. When unpacking the statements, there’s a lot of truth in the context but Kanye’s tone was one of distaste for sure. I have no idea what the various misdeeds he accused the “Jewish Media and Zionists” of are, so I can’t speak to that, and I don’t agree with the term “Jewish media” because it implies that the messaging by these media sources is solely for the benefit of Jewish people, which is just not the case. However, most of the major media companies are owned or run by Jewish executives, to include the record labels. So, when he says as a rapper “Jewish People own the Black voice” that is a fact for the Black voices being heard the most on radio and visual entertainment platforms.
At surface level, there is absolutely nothing wrong with pointing out ownership and religious affiliation…the information is available on their Wikipedia pages anyway. Kanye stated in the music industry “they’ll milk us till we die”. Granted, this is not exclusive to Jewish executives, Puffy is doing the same thing with his artists, this is an attribute of the entire industry. The music industry has no issue with promoting what is considered to be hate speech, when it is spoken by and about Black artists or Black people. Kanye is/was under Universal Music Group. In 2011 he and Jay-Z made a trash song titled N*ggas in Paris, this record label allowed this to happen, they promoted it, and profited handsomely as a result. To be all the way clear, the N-word is not a term of endearment. I cringe at every justification for its usage because the rationale is always stupid and shortsighted. That aside, the record labels don’t care if it is used excessively in music, despite the negative impact it has on the Black community. They aren’t going out of their way to right that wrong, so in context what Kanye said is mostly true. The only aspect that makes it less than true is limiting the blame to Jewish executives and owners, when it is in fact ALL of the execs and owners that do this.
I think Kyrie is a strange guy. He promoted this whole flat Earth thing for a while, which is clearly BS. So his credibility is shot in regards to recommendations. That said, Kyrie Irving did and said far less than what Kanye said. He simply tweeted a link to a movie “Hebrews to Negroes”. He didn’t add context in any way to his tweet, simply put the link out there. As a result of putting the link out there, he was asked a bunch of questions unrelated to basketball. He stated, “I don’t agree with everything in the film, I just thought it was interesting”. They couldn’t let it go, he eventually apologized for causing harm, and was then forced to put out a longer apology, which he did. The ADL was not satisfied with this, he offered to donate $500K to them and they refused it. There’s a big difference in how Kyrie approached it and how Kanye approached it. When asked if he held antisemitic views Kyrie responded, “I respect all walks of life, I can’t be antisemitic if I know where I come from” and that reporter goes on to ask for a yes or no response, to which a frustrated Kyrie supplies neither. Scroll back up to the lead picture to gain a clearer understanding for which people are Semitic people.
In my opinion, Kyrie has nothing to apologize for. At no point in his discussion of the matter did he say anything negative about Jewish people. When asked to clarify his position, he clearly says he respects all walks of life and “can’t be antisemitic” based on his feelings towards people. However, he didn’t say what they wanted him to say, so out of fear of being labeled antisemitic or aligned with an antisemite, Nike and the NBA cut ties with Kyrie. Basically, they made an example of him. In all honesty, I would never have heard about this movie had it not been for the ADL bringing it forward by way of Kyrie’s tweet. I have no interest in watching the movie myself, but the basis of the ADL tearing Kyrie down is hypocritical when they seem to remain silent when Jewish run organizations profit from Black people being torn down every day in far more obvious ways than Kyrie’s tweet. What they are doing to Kyrie is akin to a corporate lynching. This is simply to make an example of him.
Just so there’s no confusion, I’m not anti-anyone…well, except racists, rapists and the like. I don’t hold negative views for wide swaths of people based on their religion, race, gender, socioeconomic status, or anything else, 1. Because I have good sense and 2. Because I’ve had plenty of experience dealing with people from all walks of life. There are wonderful and horrible people in every demographic you can think of. Hating people because of their race, religious preference, sexual orientation or whatever you can come up with, is a waste of time and energy in my opinion something only dummies do. I also think it is foolish to believe any group behaves as a monolith, thereby including all members of a group because of the actions of a few is not fair at all. To that end, Kanye was out of line, but not wholly wrong in context. Kyrie, although I may think it’s silly to put all ones thoughts, feelings, meals and such on social media; I don’t think his actions warranted an apology, let alone his cancellation.
ADL’s mission as stated on its website is “Fighting hate for good”, they go on to say they fight all forms of antisemitism and bias using innovation and partnerships to drive impact. They also say “countering extremism and battling bigotry wherever and whenever it happens”. This is simply not true. To be fair, the only way it could be true is if the ADL was made up of Alien superheroes with no affiliation to anyone on Earth. This idea that the ADL is fighting for the objective good does not manifest when the “innovative partnerships” they tap when attacks on Jews and Jewish interests occur, are not also tapped when attacks on others occur. To be fully fair on it, they don’t have to protect everyone. The ADL is a Jewish organization aligned to defend and protect Jewish interests, no one else, they’re not the Avengers. They have hijacked the term “antisemitism” to mean Anti Jew, when that is not at all what it means. By implying sole ownership, they are discounting the lives and experiences of other Semitic people from the Middle East to Africa. They don’t fight for the Arabic speaking semites in Israel, that’s for certain.
That to say, they operate on a double standard, under the guise of fairness, however, being 100% self-serving in practice. The ADL itself states they utilize their influence to ensure the scales stay tipped away from any form of antisemitism or what they consider antisemitism, for Jewish people. If you look under their “Who we are” section, you’ll find this as well. Unfortunately, the ADL doesn’t seem to care about the other Semitic people that get bashed all the time, right in front of their faces, on networks that are headed by Jewish people. They don’t use their influence, innovation or partnerships to fight the wrongdoing and accusations directed towards Jewish people or interests. When you make a broad claim of “countering extremism wherever and whenever it happens” then remain silent when your people are the extremists, your credibility is shot, just like Kyrie’s credibility due to his belief in a flat Earth.
More telling, the ADL doesn’t check the agencies they are able to influence, predominantly run by Jewish people, when those agencies profit on the pain and suffering of Black people. If the ADL truly sought to “counter extremism wherever and whenever it happens”, they’d be defending Arabic speaking people as well as educating those that they feel are on the wrong side of an argument. They’d be holding Universal Music Group to the fire for all of the hurtful messages set to melodies. They’d be criticizing Israeli Government for their religious gentrification of the West Bank. In practice, the ADL only seeks vengeance or destruction of the people that oppose their narrow cause, thereby becoming promoters of the same problem they claim to be fighting against. For this double standard I’m team Kanye and Kyrie with an asterisk because though I don’t fully support their statements, the ADL has never practiced what they preach and they are clearly trying to bully these guys for their opinions.