Kyrie Irving Donates $500,000 Towards Fighting Hate After Controversial Tweet Was Labeled AntisemiticBrooklyn Nets point guard Kyrie Irving caused controversy last week by sending out a Twitter post about a film some claim has an antisemitic undertone. On Wednesday, the New Jersey native acknowledged that his action hurt the Jewish community and made a $500,000 donation to the Anti-Defamation League.
According to NBA.com, Irving’s basketball team has also announced that they will match the $500,000 donation to the organization.
“I oppose all forms of hatred and oppression and stand strong with communities that are marginalized and impacted every day,” said Irving in a written statement. “I am aware of the negative impact of my post towards the Jewish community and I take responsibility. I do not believe everything said in the documentary was true or reflects my morals and principles. I am a human being learning from all walks of life and I intend to do so with an open mind and a willingness to listen. So from my family and I, we meant no harm to any one group, race or religion of people, and wish to only be a beacon of truth and light.”
The 30-year-old tweeted a link to a movie titled, Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America! ABC News, the film, which came out in 2018, is based on a 2015 book that carries the same name. The book states that it “uncovers the true identity of the Children of Israel.” The Anti-Defamation League, along with several Jewish rights organizations like the American Jewish Congress has stated the content of the movie is antisemitic.
The post was deleted by Irving. He initially responded to the backlash by saying, “I am an OMNIST and I meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs. The “Anti-Semitic” label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday. I embrace and want to learn from all walks of life and religions.”
I am an OMNIST and I meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs. The “Anti-Semitic” label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday. I embrace and want to learn from all walks of life and religions.
Irving has vowed, along with the Brooklyn Nets, to place the $500,000 contribution from each toward causes and organizations that work “to eradicate hate and intolerance” in the communities they serve. This will be done with the help of the Anti-Defamation League.
“At a time when antisemitism has reached historic levels, we know the best way to fight the oldest hatred is to both confront it head-on and also to change hearts and minds. With this partnership, ADL will work with the Nets and Kyrie to open dialogue and increase understanding,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “At the same time, we will maintain our vigilance and call out the use of anti-Jewish stereotypes and tropes – whatever, whoever, or wherever the source – as we work toward a world without hate.”