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Nets send letter to Jeff Bezos regarding the movie Kyrie Irving recommended: Is there a double standard?

There is a great deal to unpack in the growing scandal surrounding Kyrie Irving and his views, but there’s one aspect nobody has addressed until now.

Nets send letter to Jeff Bezos regarding the movie Kyrie Irving recommended: Is there a double standard?
Maddie MeyerGetty Images

The controversy surrounding Kyrie Irving has taken yet another twist, with his team and the Anti-Defamation League demanding Amazon either address the film on their platform or give some answers about its content.

Anti-Defamation & Brooklyn Nets demand action or answers from Amazon

According to reports on Friday, the Anti-Defamation League, along with the Brooklyn Nets, have sent official communication to Jeff Bezos and other senior executives of Amazon; asking that the film and book for which Kyrie Irving has been sanctioned for referencing, be removed from their platform, or that they offer an explanation about issues with its content. Entitled “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America,” the 2018 film based off a 2015 book by the same name, writhe with anti-Semitic stereotypes and goes on to espouse a number of falsehoods such as black people being the original Israelites who have since been abused and exiled by Jews. Most notably, the film suggests that the Holocaust didn’t actually occur.

Where Amazon is concerned, the film’s description on their platform states that it “uncovers the true identity of the Children of Israel by proving the true ethnicity of Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, the Sons of Ham, Shem & Japheth. Find out what Islam, Judaism and Christianity has covered up for centuries in regards to the true biblical identity of the so-called Negro in this movie packed with tons of research.” Take that how you will, but what’s certain is there is not even a disclaimer or viewer discretion advisory anywhere to be seen.

Kyrie Irving finally apologized

In case you missed it, Kyrie Irving did actually back down on his stance and subsequently, issued an apology on Thursday evening. It’s worth noting, however, that in his statement he still maintained that he agreed with some aspects of the film. Take a look for yourself:

The question at the center of the Kyrie Irving scandal

It’s clear that there are a lot of layers in this one. From questions about what ‘freedom of speech’ really means, to Irving’s love affair with conspiracies, as well as his clear failure to understand the size of the platform he holds. As the saying goes ‘to those whom much is given, much is taken away.’ Then, one also has to wonder whether or not punishing and isolating someone for a controversial belief, is better than empathy and education. Yet, there is another question that’s important to consider:

Why is Kyrie Irving being ostracized and punished, for alluding to an antisemitic film, when Amazon hosts it on their platform and as such profits from it? With optics like that, isn’t there the ironic risk of igniting the kind of racial tensions, that none of us want to see?