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Meira E. Schneider-Atik
marching to the beat of my own drummer

A Letter to ABC

To the leaders at the ABC network,

I had seen Whoopi Goldberg for many years as a comic actress with a serious bent. I loved the movie Ghost mainly because of her character and I think her Oscar was very well-deserved. I also loved the movie Sister Act and others. Ms. Goldberg always came off not only funny, but very smart and intelligent. After all, she would never have made it to where she is without being intelligent. 

To me, intelligence is not just about knowing a lot of things as if you’re preparing to play Jeopardy. It’s also about being willing to learn. Ms. Goldberg comes off as someone who is not just able to learn, but willing to learn. 

This is where the problem is.  

Yes, she made a remark about the Holocaust supposedly not being about race and that was not only incorrect but offensive. But I agree with many others that her remark was about ignorance, not malice. And we’re not supposed to punish ignorance because that does absolutely no good. The cure for ignorance is education. And instead of giving Ms. Goldberg and all her viewers and fans a chance to learn and be educated, you chose to punish her. 

Then again, should any of us be surprised? 

Bringing Holocaust survivors on to The View would do a lot more good. They could talk about their experiences and educate not only Ms. Goldberg, but the other hosts, the studio audience, and the many viewers. The Holocaust is something that must be part of our educational curriculum and part of our cultural discussion/dialogue. After all, if we don’t remember it, we can’t ensure that that kind of murder and destruction won’t happen again. 

However, portraying Jews as innocent victims of anything is not politically correct nowadays. And perhaps that’s why you decided on a public punishment rather than education. Perhaps you agree with Ms. Goldberg that since we Jews are white, we can’t be victims of racial hatred or anything else. Or perhaps you’re afraid of offending the anti-Semites/anti-Zionists/Jew-haters out there because their voices are so loud and they’re so “popular” and “influential.” 

Well played, ABC. You punished Ms. Goldberg for her remarks and so you come off like you’re on the side of the good guys. But it’s really a smoke screen. You had a chance to educate Ms. Goldberg, the other hosts, the studio audience, and the TV viewers about the Holocaust and you chose not to do that even though it’s badly needed now as much as ever. At least you won’t have the anti-Semites/anti-Zionists/Jew-haters shouting you down, but then again, you could’ve educated them too (or at least exposed them to education whether they want it or not) and you chose not to do that.  

Again, well played. But the smoke isn’t in my eyes.

I hope that Ms. Goldberg does take up offers to visit Yad Vashem and other places and I hope she meets up with Holocaust survivors and learns more about it so that she can understand why her remark was so wrong. And I hope she brings that new knowledge and understanding to her viewers and fans even if it’s not politically correct nowadays. But you had a wonderful opportunity to help and you chose not to do so. 

Sincerely,

A proud Jew who knows how important Holocaust education is. 

About the Author
Meira E. Schneider-Atik is a wardrobe stylist, personal shopper, and writer/blogger. Her goal is to help women feel good about themselves and to dispel the myths about tzniut and dressing well. Her heart is in Eretz Yisrael, but for now, she and her family live in Queens, NY.
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