(Los Angeles -- March 10, 2021) -- The 2021 Grammy Awards is featuring two people, Tamika Mallory and Jay Electronica, who are both known for their enthusiastic support for Nation of Islam’s antisemitic and homophobic leader Louis Farrakhan. Mallory remains unapologetic in her support for Farrakhan. In her Twitter and Instagram accounts she has promoted Farrakhan’s annual Saviour’s Day events (where he has regularly attacked Jews), called him the “GOAT” (Greatest Of All Time) and praised him for telling the “hard truths.” Mallory has refused to distance herself from Farrakhan and repeatedly declined to condemn his antisemitism. Her social media posts in praise of Farrakhan remain on her Twitter and Instagram accounts.
Rapper Jay Electronica is a nominee for Best Rap Album at this year’s GRAMMYs for his album “A Written Testimony.” The album’s opening track begins with a speech by Louis Farrakhan, who is heard declaring, “I don’t want to waste any time. I ask the question: Who are the real children of Israel? And I’d like to answer it right away… the black people of America are the real children of Israel and they—we—are the choice of God.” Another track on the album, "The Ghost of Soulja Slim," opens with a speech by Farrakhan and contains the antisemitic lyrics, “From a hard place and a rock to the Roc Nation of Islam… And I bet you a Rothschild I get a bang for my dollar/The synagogue of Satan want me to hang by my collar.”
“It is shocking, shameful, and hurtful that an album, so filled with hate, would be nominated for a major award by the GRAMMYs. At a time in 2021 when we, as a society, are working to build a culture with greater sensitivity to hate and racism, so as to heal the scars that have been created from this kind of vitriol, we must ask why the Academy is normalizing this hatred against one group, Jews, in such an ugly, and irresponsible way," said Roz Rothstein, CEO of StandWithUs and herself a daughter of Holocaust Survivors.
“The insensitivity shown by the Academy to the Jewish community by including Mallory as a featured "performer," (https://www.grammy.com/grammys/2021-grammy-performers-host) and by nominating Jay Electronica’s album for Best Rap Album, shows a disturbing tolerance for anti-Jewish racism, a dangerous insensitivity to millions of Jews, including Holocaust Survivors who are still alive, and an utter lack of moral judgment," continued Rothstein.
“The GRAMMYs’ raising of these two bigoted individuals to positions of honor gives antisemitism a pass. This makes no sense given the massive rise in deadly anti-Jewish hate crimes in recent years. Jewish people represent less than 2% of Americans and yet have suffered more than 60% of religious related hate crimes. The GRAMMYs is choosing the wrong role models at a time when there should be more sensitivity against racism directed at black people, Jews and all other victims of hate crimes. It is impossible in a moral universe to raise up one community by tearing down another," stated Carly Gammill, Director of the StandWithUs Center for Combating Antisemitism.
“It should be easy to denounce anti-Jewish hatred. It should be easy to recognize it and condemn it in clear and unambiguous language regardless of the source. It should be easy to do it again and again unconditionally and with consistency until hateful, racist language is not as prevalent in our society. Yet, the Academy and CBS are both failing in their moral duty by instead promoting those who traffic in such bigotry," continued Gammill.
“We are saddened and concerned that the Academy has shown a tone deafness when it comes to issues of antisemitism. Elevating such irresponsible choices of role models only serves to mainstream acceptance of antisemitism and fuel the hate that has led to an unprecedented number of hate crimes against Jews in the U.S. We strongly urge CBS and the Academy to do better than this. As an educational organization dedicated to fighting the spread of antisemitism, StandWithUs would be pleased to provide its educational resources to relevant stakeholders to ensure this mistake is not repeated, ” stated Roz Rothstein. About StandWithUs StandWithUs (SWU) is an international, non-profit and non-partisan Israel education organization that works to inspire and educate people of all ages about Israel, as well as challenge misinformation and fight against antisemitism. Through university fellowships, high school internships, middle school curricula, conferences, materials, social media, educational films and missions to Israel, StandWithUs supports people around the world who want to educate their schools and communities about Israel. Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Los Angeles, the organization has chapters and programs on 5 continents, including the U.S., Israel, UK, Canada, South Africa and Brazil. For the last 8 years, SWU has consistently received the highest possible ratings from Charity Navigator (4 stars) and Guidestar (Platinum). www.standwithus.com and www. facebook.com/standwithus and www.twitter.com/standwithus