Julianna Margulies apologizes for saying Black, LGBTQ people hate Jews

Julianna Margulies apologizes for saying Black, LGBTQ people hate Jews

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Actress Julianna Margulies apologized this week to Black and LGBTQ+ people after she accused the groups in a podcast last month of hating Jews, the latest of several celebrity comments related to the Israel-Gaza war that have been met with backlash.

“I am horrified by the fact that statements I made on a recent podcast offended the Black and LGBTQIA+ communities, communities I truly love and respect,” the actress known for “The Good Wife” and “The Morning Show” said in her apology statement. “I want to be 100% clear: Racism, homophobia, sexism, or any prejudice against anyone’s personal beliefs or identity are abhorrent to me, full stop.”

“I did not intend for my words to sow further division, for which I am sincerely apologetic,” she added.

She voiced her criticism during a Nov. 20 episode of the podcast “The Back Room with Andy Ostroy.” Margulies, who is Jewish, said she has supported both marginalized communities in the past, posting a black square during protests against George Floyd’s murder in 2020 and participating in a campaign supportive of same-sex marriage with her husband. But she said she hadn’t seen the same fervor and support from the groups in support of Jewish people amid the Israel-Gaza war.

“The fact that the entire Black community isn’t standing with us, to me, says either they just don’t know or they’ve been brainwashed to hate Jews,” she said in the podcast.

At another point in the podcast, Margulies criticized LGBTQ youths, specifically people who use they/them pronouns, for pro-Palestinian sentiments: “It’s those kids who are spewing this antisemitic hate,” she said. They “have no idea that if they stepped foot in an Islamic country … it’s those people that will be the first people beheaded and their heads played with … like a soccer ball on the field.”

She also misrepresented a flier for an event hosted by a student group for queer women and nonbinary people at Columbia University, erroneously claiming that it was advertised as “no Jews allowed.” In fact, the group’s Black lesbian movie night was promoted on fliers along with a line that said “It’s FREE PALESTINE over here. Zionists aren’t invited,” according to the university’s student newspaper, the Columbia Spectator.

“As someone who plays a lesbian journalist on ‘The Morning Show,’ I’m more offended by it as a lesbian than I am as a Jew,” Margulies said on the podcast. “I want to say to them, ‘you [expletive] idiots. You don’t exist. You’re even lower than the Jews. A. you’re Black, and B. you’re gay. And you’re turning your back against the people who support you?’”

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Margulies is one of several celebrities who have faced social repercussions for comments related to the Israel-Gaza war. Susan Sarandon, the Oscar-winning actress who starred in “Thelma & Louise” and “Dead Man Walking,” apologized Friday and was reportedly dropped as a client by United Talent Agency after she said at a pro-Palestinian rally last month that Jewish people were “getting a taste of what it feels like to be a Muslim in this country, so often subjected to violence.”

“This phrasing was a terrible mistake, as it implies that until recently Jews have been strangers to persecution, when the opposite is true,” Sarandon wrote in a statement on Instagram. “As we all know, from centuries of oppression and genocide in Europe, to the Tree of Life shooting in Pittsburgh, Jews have long been familiar with discrimination and religious violence which continues to this day.”

“I deeply regret diminishing this reality and hurting people with this comment,” she continued. “It was my intent to show solidarity in the struggle against bigotry of all kinds, and I am sorry I failed to do so.”

Last month, actress Melissa Barrera was fired from “Scream VII” because of her social media comments about the Israel-Gaza war, in which she supported Palestinians and said Israel’s actions in Gaza were “genocide” and “ethnic cleansing.” She has since doubled down on her statements, saying “silence is not an option for me.”

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