On Jan. 30, Whoopi Goldberg used her platform at The View to express her anger at the lackluster sense of urgency the U.S. justice system appears to show when Black people are being killed brutally by police officers—a conversation sparked by the unconscionable police-involved death of Tyre Nichols.
“Do we need to see White people also get beat before anybody will do anything?” the EGOT asked rhetorically. “I’m not suggesting that. So don’t write us and tell me what a racist I am. I’m just asking is that what people have to see in order to wake up and realize this affects us all?”
Predictably, the internet exploded into a battle of arbitrary polarization between people who thought what Golberg said was a racist call for violence against white people, and people who have ears, brains and the grade school-level critical thinking capacity to comprehend what is actually being said.
“@TheView if that’s not racist I don’t know what is how do you allow them to speak this way?” one Twitter user commented. (She should have stopped at “I don’t know what is” because, yes, that’s correct.)
“I’ve never been a fan of @ABC‘s @TheView but I’m really bothered by the fact that Whoopi Goldberg is now calling for innocent white people to be beaten to death by police officers,” another (confused) person tweeted. “Is it time to end the show or at least fire Whoopi for her racist hate?”
OK, white people, y’all really need to stop it.
This isn’t like the time Whoopi got a little too controversial for her own good while speaking on the whiteness of Jewish victims of the Holocaust. At the very least, there were multiple plausible arguments to be made during that debacle. You could argue that most Jewish people were and are, indeed, white, and you could also argue that, in the context of Nazi Germany, Jewish people were effectively a different race, and it was for that reason they were oppressed and brutally hunted down and killed. You could also argue that, in that instance, the Sister Act actor should simply have kept her opinion in the drafts.
But there is absolutely nothing ambiguous about Godberg’s sentiments this time. There are no two ways to interpret what she said. She was clearly asking if white people needed to be victimized before the justice system moved to end police violence. One would have to stretch themselves into a white-and-fragile pretzel and go far out of their way to read her words as an actual call for cops to start beating white people to death. In fact, she literally said, “I’m not suggesting that.”
The outrage over Nichols’ violent death is real. This counterfeit Whoopi anger is about as fake as fake outrage gets.
Just stop it, y’all.
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