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The View in Review

Whoopi Insists 'The Holocaust Isn't About Race' in Uncomfortable Moment on The View

In an attempt to shut things down, producers played the show's pre-commercial music while Whoopi was still speaking.
  • Whoopi repeatedly insisted that the Holocaust "was about man's inhumanity to man" in an awkward discussion on The View Monday morning. (Photo: ABC)
    Whoopi repeatedly insisted that the Holocaust "was about man's inhumanity to man" in an awkward discussion on The View Monday morning. (Photo: ABC)

    The View began the week on an uncomfortable note when Whoopi Goldberg repeatedly said that "the Holocaust isn't about race." After her co-hosts reminded her that the Nazis "considered Jews a different race," Whoopi insisted that the Holocaust was "about how people treat each other," and things quickly got awkward as the longtime moderator doubled and tripled-down on her misguided argument. In a likely indication that even producers felt the segment had gone in an undesirable direction, The View's pre-commercial music began playing while Whoopi was still speaking, but she declined to react to it, and the discussion continued for nearly a minute as the music continued fading in and out.

    Whoopi's uncomfortable moment came during a discussion about a Tennessee school board banning Art Spiegelman's Maus, a graphic novel about the Holocaust. The discussion began normally enough, with all five women condemning the ban, but it took a turn when Whoopi said we must "be truthful" about the mass genocide that saw the Nazis systematically murder 6 million Jews. "The Holocaust isn't about race," she said, prompting immediate disagreement from across the table. "No! It's not about race!"

    After Joy Behar and Sara Haines insisted "it is" about race, and Sunny Hostin said it was about "ethnicity," Whoopi doubled down. "It's about man's inhumanity to man," she said. "That's what it's about."

    "But it's about white supremacy," reminded guest co-host Ana Navarro. "But these are two white groups of people!" replied Whoopi.

    When Behar and Haines again pushed back ("They went after Black people too," said Behar), the longtime moderator accused them of "missing the point." Said Whoopi, "The minute you turn it into race, it goes down this alley. Let's talk about it for what it is. It's how people treat each other! It's a problem. It doesn't matter if you're Black or white. 'Cause Black, white, Jews, Italians — everybody eats each other."

    As Whoopi spoke, The View's theme music began to play, but she ignored the clear signal to wrap things up. "If you're uncomfortable if you hear about Maus, should you be worried? Should your child say, 'Oh my god, I wonder if that's me,'" she said. "No, that's not what they're going to say! They're going to say, 'I don't want to be like that.' Most kids, they don't want to be cruel."

    Clearly, the ladies also felt emboldened to continue on with their discussion, even as the music played out. "We're living in an era where people are comparing vaccine cards to the yellow stars. Where people are comparing vaccinations to what Anne Frank went through," said Navarro. "So it is necessary for kids to learn about the Holocaust."

    "To learn about man's inhumanity to man, however it exposes itself," replied Whoopi, one final time.

    Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.

    TOPICS: Whoopi Goldberg, The View, Ana Navarro, Joy Behar, Sara Haines, Sunny Hostin, Holocaust