I ‘take responsibility’ for the impact of fasting on the Jewish community
Irving, the Nets and the Anti-Defamation League released a joint statement announcing the donations Wednesday night.
“I stand against all forms of hatred and oppression and stand firmly with communities that are marginalized and affected every day,” Irving said in a statement. “I am aware of the negative impact of my post on the Jewish community and take responsibility. I do not believe that everything said in the documentary is accurate or reflects my morals and principles. I am a human being who learns from all walks of life and I intend to do so with an open mind and willingness to listen. So, from my family and I, we have not harmed any group, race or religion of people, and we only want to be a beacon of truth and light.”
Irving initially announced the film, “Black Hebrews: Black America Awakens,” late last week. He defended that position at a press conference on Saturday, saying he would not “give up” on what he believes in, while refusing to say whether he has anti-Semitic beliefs.
“There is no place for anti-Semitism, racism, false narratives or misguided attempts to create animosity and hatred,” Sam Zussman, CEO of BSE Global, parent company of the Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center, said in a joint statement. “Now, more than ever, there is an urgent need to provide education in these areas. We put our previous statements into practice because actions speak louder than words.”
Irving’s post has since been condemned by Nets owner Joe Tsai, and the NBA responded by issuing a statement condemning the hate speech. Irving has not spoken publicly since Saturday night, and it remains unclear when he will do so again.
“At a time when anti-Semitism has reached historic levels, we know that the best way to combat the oldest hatred is to confront it head-on, but also to change hearts and minds. With this partnership, the ADL will work with the Nets and Kyrie to open a dialogue and increase understanding,” Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL executive director, said in a statement. “At the same time, we will maintain our vigilance and call out the use of anti-Jewish stereotypes and tropes – anything, anyone or wherever the source – as we work towards a world without hate.”
In a joint statement, the Nets said Irving and the team will work with the ADL in an “effort to develop an educational program that is inclusive and comprehensively combats all forms of anti-Semitism and bigotry.”
The Nets also said they would continue to support and participate in Shine A Light, which they described as “an ongoing initiative dedicated to shining a light on modern anti-Semitism.”
“The events of the past week have stirred many emotions within the Nets organization, our Brooklyn community and the nation,” the joint statement said. “The ensuing public discourse has brought greater awareness of the challenges we face as a society when it comes to combating hate and hate speech. We are ready to take on this challenge and recognize that this is a unique moment to make a lasting impact…
“Additionally, to ensure a sustained and meaningful impact in raising awareness and education about the important topics of hate based on race, ethnicity and religion, the Brooklyn Nets, New York Liberty and team-affiliated organizations will host a series of community conversations at Barclays center in Brooklyn, in partnership with the ADL and other national civil rights organizations, as well as local community associations.”
The Nets are scheduled to practice Thursday before Friday night’s game against Washington Wizards in Washington, DC
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