Published February 4, 2022
The news that ABC placed Whoopi Goldberg on two weeks’ leave from co-hosting The View because of her comment that the Holocaust had nothing to do with race was shocking on several grounds. First, it is shocking for the sheer stupidity of the comment, one that beggars belief. Nobody needs to have read Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf or Nazi theorist Alfred Rosenberg’s The Myth of the Twentieth Century to know that the Holocaust was all about race, whether it was targeting Jews, Slavs, or other “inferiors.” Second, it is shocking because the two-week reflection period seems remarkably lenient in a world where a trivial but tasteless tweet from years ago can cost people their livelihoods—generally, of course, ordinary people without the influential friends, brand recognition, and substantial bank accounts of the likes of Ms. Goldberg.
But then again, the leniency is not shocking. Goldberg is representative of so many progressively minded people in the media class who talk as other people tweet—with no sense of responsibility, no sensitivity to other people, and no real grasp of what constitutes an argument or even the truth. She is, after all, the woman who, with reference to film director Roman Polanski’s rape of a minor, argued it was not “rape-rape,” a fascinating categorical distinction, especially when applied to the sexual assault of a minor. Yet Goldberg lived to tell the tale of that one too, though I suspect she does not tell it very often at polite dinner parties these days, if at all. Like her fellow apologists for Hollywood’s former favorite child rapist, such as actress Meryl Streep, she has gone a tad silent on the issue of her support for Polanski in recent years.
Carl R. Trueman taught on the faculties of the Universities of Nottingham and Aberdeen before moving to the United States in 2001 to teach at Westminster Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania. In 2017-18 he was the William E. Simon Visiting Fellow in Religion and Public Life in the James Madison Program at Princeton University. Since 2018, he has served as a professor at Grove City College. He is also a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and a contributing editor at First Things. Trueman’s latest book is the bestselling The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self. He is married with two adult children and is ordained in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.