Ex-NBA star Charles Barkley slams antisemitism from Black celebrities
Basketball legend Charles Barkley slammed several African-American celebrities and athletes for recent antisemitic action and comments, NBC reported.
In a video posted to Twitter by the official NBA on TNT account, Barkley called out several prominent African-American public figures for their comments, specifically referring to Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson, former NBA player Stephen Jackson, actor and TV host Nick Cannon and rapper Ice Cube.
"Listen, DeSean Jackson, Stephen Jackson, Nick Cannon, Ice Cube. Man, what the hell are y’all doing?" Barkley said in the video.
"Y’all want racial equality. We all do. I don’t understand how insulting another group helps our cause. And the only person who called y’all on it was Kareem [Abdul-Jabar]. We can’t allow Black people to be prejudiced, also. Especially if we’re asking for white folks to respect us, give us economic opportunity and things like that. I’m so disappointed in these men. I don’t understand how you beat hatred with more hatred. That stuff should never come up in your vocabulary, and it should never come up in your heart. I don’t understand it.
"I’m never gonna accept it, and I’m asking you guys, I’m begging you guys, man, you guys are famous, you’ve got a platform. We’ve gotta do better, man. I want allies. I don’t want to alienate anybody and to take shots at the Jewish race, the white race. I just don’t like it 'cause it’s not right and I had to call them on it 'cause it’s really – it’s really been on my heart."
In early July, DeSean Jackson faced controversy after uploading a quote attributed to Adolf Hitler to his Instagram story. This sparked backlash against him, alongside accusations of antisemitism. Stephen Jackson took to social media to defend the Eagles wide receiver, saying that he "spoke the truth."
DeSean would later apologize for his actions, and agreed to visit the Auschwitz concentration camp alongside Holocaust survivor Edward Mosberg and the organization From The Depths.
Later, Cannon faced controversy after voicing antisemitic conspiracy theories on his podcast, including expressing admiration for Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who has voiced homophobic and antisemitic beliefs for years.
In June, Ice Cube published several antisemitic posts on Twitter, including posting conspiracy theories and voicing Black Hebrew ideology.
In response, NBA Hall of Famer Abdul-Jabar wrote a column in The Hollywood Reporter calling out Ice Cube and other celebrities for their antisemitism. The rapper criticized him for this article, and tweeted “Shame on the Hollywood Reporter who obviously gave my brother Kareem 30 pieces of silver to cut us down without even a phone call.”
In response to Barkley's video, Stephen Jackson uploaded a video on Instagram warning him to "speak about what you know."
"I know what I said," Jackson said. "So keep my name out your mouth. However you feel, I honestly don't give a f**k.
"I'm out here with the real people," he continued. "The people that's really suffering. Caring about my people... we don't give a f**k what you're upset with. I know I don't. I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing. The people support me. The people are standing with me."
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