New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft sponsored a commercial titled “Stand up to Jewish Hate” that ran during the first quarter of Sunday’s NFL contest between his Patriots and the New York Jets.
The somber 30-second spot was from Kraft’s Foundation to Combat Antisemitism and asked viewers to stand up for the Jewish community and oppose hate “against Jews.”
“Antisemitism is hate,” the ad reads. “Hate against Jews. For being Jewish. Recently many of you have spoken up. We hear you today. We must hear you tomorrow. There are less than 8 million Jewish people in this country. Fewer than are watching this game. They need to hear your voice.”
The message against antisemitism comes on the heels of recent remarks from Kanye West that were widely seen as being antisemitic — the rapper found himself locked out of Twitter and Instagram after he threatened to go “death con 3 on Jewish people.” Adidas would also end its partnership with West — a deal that made him a billionaire.
Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving also drew criticism after sharing a clip from a documentary called “Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America.” The documentary contains many antisemitic tropes.
Nets owner Joe Tsai condemned Irving’s actions in a tweet: “I’m disappointed that Kyrie appears to support a film based on a book full of anti-Semitic disinformation. I want to sit down and make sure he understands this is hurtful to all of us, and as a man of faith, it is wrong to promote hate based on race, ethnicity, or religion.”
The Foundation to Combat Anti-Semitism’s vision “is a world where people of conscience unite to end anti-Semitism once and for all. By effectively combatting the rise of anti-Semitism, notably online and through social media, the long-term goals of the foundation include creating a replicable model for fighting other forms of prejudice, racism and hate crimes,” according to the group’s website.
The foundation was started in 2019 by Kraft, who is Jewish. He committed $20 million to the effort, according to The Hill.
He said in a statement on the ad that “we must do more to make people aware that antisemitism is a growing threat against Jews on social media and in communities across the country.”
“I have committed tremendous resources toward this effort and am vowing to do more. I encourage others to join in these efforts,” Kraft added. “My hope is this commercial will continue to enhance the national conversation about the need to speak out against hatred of all types, and particularly to stand up to Jewish hate.”
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