Providence Rabbi reacts to anti-Semitic, hateful comments by rapper Kanye West
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — Adidas ended its partnership with rapper formerly known as Kanye West on Tuesday over his recent slew of offensive and anti-Semitic remarks.
Last week, the rapper, who now goes by Ye, said on a podcast, “I can say anti-Semitic things and Adidas can’t drop me. Now what?”
Adidas was Ye’s largest corporate partnership.
“The microphone that he has really amplifies the anti-Semitic things they say and do,” Providence Rabbi Barry Dolinger said Tuesday referring to the rapper’s widespread reach.
The famous songwriter has 18 million Instagram followers. There are 15 million Jewish people in the world.
Dolinger said even if a fraction of his followers buys into his beliefs- that will make a harmful impact on Jewish people worldwide.
“One of them (ideas) is the replacement idea, really that Black and Native Americans sometimes are the real Jewish people, and that Jewish people aren’t really Jews,” Dolinger added.
According to the Anti-Defamation League, the anti-Semitic trope comes from extreme views of the Black Hebrew Israelite Movement.
These extreme believers reject the widely accepted definitions of Judaism, saying that people of color are the true children of Israel and that white Jewish people are essentially “faking” their religion.
“It’s a particular idea I think a lot of people aren’t familiar with,” Dolinger said referring to the extreme views that Ye spoke to.
According to the ADL, anti-Semitic incidents are on the rise across the country, jumping 34% from 2020 to 2021.
“If people can be kind and listen, and understand it really goes a long way helping people feel comfortable and isolated,” the Rabbi said.