Keri Irving He will miss the first of several Brooklyn Nets games on Friday after being suspended for comments Regarding his tweet link to an antisemitic documentary.
The Nets suspended Irving on Thursday after he initially doubled down on his decision to share content on his Twitter account. The NBA star issued an apology hours later on his verified Instagram account, saying he takes full responsibility for his actions.
Irving wrote, “To all the Jewish families and communities affected and affected by my position, I am deeply sorry for causing you pain, and I apologize.” “At first I acted out of emotion at my unjust characterization of anti-Semitism, rather than on the process of healing my Jewish brothers and sisters who had been affected by the hateful remarks made in the documentary.
“I had no intention of disrespecting any Jewish cultural history regarding the Holocaust or perpetuating any hatred. I am learning from this unfortunate event and I hope we will find an understanding between us all.
Backlash against Irving escalated after he defended his decision to share a link to the 2018 movie “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America” last week. The film, which is based on Ronald Dalton’s book of the same name, has been criticized by civil rights groups for anti-Semitism.
Reporters asked Irving earlier on Thursday – before he published his apology – whether he held anti-Semitic beliefs or if he was sorry. At the time, he responded, saying that he respected “all walks of life” and that he had no intention of causing any harm.
She nets later They were “appalled” when “the player refused to state unequivocally that he does not have anti-Semitic beliefs, and does not recognize certain hateful material in the film,” during a media session.
“Such a failure to disavow anti-Semitism when given a clear opportunity to do so is deeply disturbing, contradicts our organization’s values, and constitutes detrimental team behavior,” the Nets said in their statement before Irving apologized.
The team also said they made repeated attempts to help Irving “understand the harm and danger of his words and actions.”
Irving’s suspension without pay means he will not play Friday’s game against the Washington Wizards. The Nets said the suspension would last for at least four additional games, and Irving is also required to fulfill “a series of objective remedial actions that address the harmful effect of his behaviour”.
Irving’s comments during the briefing with reporters Thursday escalated controversy.
When asked if he was apologizing, he said, “I did not mean to cause any harm. I am not the one who made the documentary.”
When asked if he was surprised by the reaction, Irving said, “I take full responsibility, once again I will repeat, to post something on my Instagram or Twitter that may have had some unfortunate lies in it,” Irving replied.
When asked if he had any anti-Semitic beliefs, Irving replied, “I respect all walks of life. I embrace all walks of life. This is where I sit.”
Pressed for a yes or no answer to a question about whether Irving had any anti-Semitic beliefs, he replied, “I can’t be anti-Semitic if I knew where I came from.”
When ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt learned how the NBA star answered that question, he noted that Irving “has a lot of work to do.”
“The answer to the question ‘Do you have any anti-Semitic beliefs’ is always an unequivocal ‘no’. We took @KyrieIrving at his word when he said he took responsibility, but today he hasn’t kept that promise,” Greenblatt wrote.
Following Irving’s suspension Thursday, the ADL declined to accept a $500,000 donation that Irving and the Nets had previously announced. The ADL’s decision to decline the donation came before Irving apologized late Thursday.
The star’s comments also drew blame from NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who said he was “disappointed” in Irving.
“Kerry Irving made a reckless decision to post a link to a film that contained highly offensive anti-Semitic material,” Silver said in a statement before Irving apologized.
The controversy comes as anti-Semitism has risen in the United States over the past few years. At least 2,717 anti-Semitic incidents were reported in the United States in 2021, up from 942 similar incidents in 2015, according to the ADL.
Irving has faced controversy in recent years that has affected his playing time. Last season, Irving did not play in many Brooklyn home games because he was not vaccinated against Covid-19, which has been a hindrance to playing indoors due to the mandate of a workplace vaccine in New York City. The base was later lifted and returned to the Barclays Center in March.
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