In March 1965, that was 56 years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. and Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel linked arms and marched as part of the civil rights protest from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. Today, over 170 celebrities have joined the Black- Jewish Entertainment Alliance.
It should be noted that in those years, relationship of Blacks and Jews have become strained. Moreover, with the rise of anti-Semitism in America as well as ongoing institutional racism against Black Americans, more than 170 Black and Jewish people in the entertainment industry signed a unity statement to launch the Black-Jewish Entertainment Alliance this week alone.
The major aim of the organization is to stand together to stop anti-Semitism and racism within the entertainment industry. Now, it is interesting to note that heavyweights from both communities have signed on.
Among the celebrities that joined the Alliance are: Tiffany Haddish, Jason Alexander, Nick Cannon, Mayim Bialik, Billy Porter and Gene Simmons.
Furthermore, in a statement, Aaron Bay-Schuck, co-chairman and CEO of Warner Records said, “The Black-Jewish communities, who have a long history of supporting and working together, are so much stronger when we stand together in the fight against hate”.
“This Alliance will elevate voices in the entertainment community that can help the public to better understand the causes, manifestations, and effects of racism and anti-Semitism, ensuring that our entertainment industry is doing its part to be a voice for hope, unity and healing in our country.”
The unity statement itself reads: “We acknowledge that the Black and Jewish communities have a shared history of subjugation and persecution”.
“We recognize that the Black community in America has faced a history of racism that continues to this day, while the Jewish community is currently encountering record levels of anti-Semitism, which affects both group’s sense of fear, vulnerability and self-worth”.
“As members of the entertainment community, we stand against all forms of hate, and pledge to work to bring our two communities together in solidarity, to support one another in our struggles, and to better understand each other’s plight and narratives”.
“The Jewish community must continue to speak out against racial injustice and work to effect change, while the Black community must continue to speak out against all forms of anti-Semitism”.
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