Whoopi Goldberg is taking a lot of criticism for comments she made Monday as The View tackled the subject of Maus being banned in a Tennessee school district. The graphic novel is about the Holocaust, but it was nudity in the book that got it banned, and as the co-hosts discussed it, Joy Behar said that the excuse about nudity was just to cover the fact that the school board doesn't "like history that makes white people look bad." Goldberg, who has since apologized, first replied, "Well, this is white people doing it to white people, so y'all gonna fight amongst yourselves," before later going on to say that "the Holocaust isn't about race." She said, again, that it involved "two white groups of people" and was about "man's inhumanity to man," not racism.
As CNN explains, whether Jewish people should be characterized as white is a topic of debate, but the fact remains that they are subjected to anti-Semitism and hate crimes, and the Nazis most definitely considered Jews to be of a different race—and used that as justification for the genocide they carried out. Goldberg's co-hosts pushed back on her claims, but she continued to insist the Holocaust was about humans' treatment of other humans. It wasn't long before others were pushing back as well. "Racism was central to Nazi ideology. Jews were not defined by religion, but by race. Nazi racist beliefs fueled genocide and mass murder," the US Holocaust Museum tweeted. "The Holocaust was driven by multiple factors, and there is no doubt that one of them was Nazi racism against Jews," tweeted advocacy organization Stand With Us. "Nazis back then and white supremacists today consider Jews to be a different and inferior race."
"The #Holocaust was about the Nazi's systematic annihilation of the Jewish people—who they deemed to be an inferior race," tweeted the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League. "They dehumanized them and used this racist propaganda to justify slaughtering 6 million Jews. Holocaust distortion is dangerous." The backlash came from both sides of the aisle, with conservative commentators Ben Shapiro, Meghan McCain, and Piers Morgan among those denouncing Goldberg's take. Many others on social media also took issue with Goldberg, and she ultimately apologized, USA Today reports. "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," she tweeted. "I stand corrected. The Jewish people around the world have always had my support and that will never waiver [sic]. I'm sorry for the hurt I have caused." (Read more Whoopi Goldberg stories.)