Oh look, everyone — Jason Whitlock demands your attention… again


Jason Whitlock

Jason Whitlock
Screenshot: Promotional

In the for-profit universe of attention-whoring, there’s no such thing as bad press. Saying anything to get your name trending and increasing your social-media following is the name of the game. To have others spend time and energy either agreeing with or lambasting at your takes is the ultimate addiction for those sickos. And in the sports world, one of the biggest and fringe attention pleasure-seekers is Jason Whitlock, who’s latest sermon on finding whatever is trending and inserting his name into the discussion in some awful way veered into antisemitism on Wednesday.

Whitlock quotes scripture Revelation 2:9 and ends his tweet with #Kanye. Name-dropping that antisemitic rapper represents a wedge of society which only deranged or don’t-give-a-fuck people are entering willingly these days. The passage reads to me as the former ESPN and FOX Sports commentator equating the Jewish people as the devil, setting the world back at least 80 years to target the Jewish community in a similar fashion to the Nazis. It’s really heavy, heart-wrenching content.

The only logical way to digest anti-semitism is as bigoted comments. Therefore Whitlock can’t possibly see this attention as negative. He craves being part of the general discussion when it comes to anything sports related, since his draw in name recognition alone doesn’t cut it. Anyone with a brain would know how ridiculous they sound spewing blind hate against Jewish people. I’d believe Whitlock falls in the empty-cranium category. Let me also break the fourth wall — if his intention was to get people pissed off enough to write stories about him, congrats Jason. Also congrats on being a lunatic. And for the crowd that says we shouldn’t write about this at all, letting his comments be without holding Whitlock accountable is worse than showing you the egregious error of his ways.

Which is worse, Jason? Actually believing the bigotry you type or knowing the falsehoods and damage that could be caused by your words and actively participating in antisemitism to further the attention-seeking goals you’ve set for your career? Neither is good. Both are potentially destructive. You have nearly 600,000 followers on Twitter alone. Knowing you have a responsibility to tread carefully with an audience that wide, where truly every message of yours goes viral, is paramount and comes at a time as antisemitism is on the rise. The Anti-Defamation League, whose mission is to stop the mistreatment of Jewish people and provide equal treatment for all, found 2,717 antisemitism events in 2021, a 34 percent increase from 2020. That averages to more than seven such incidents per day. But by all means, tweet about Jews and Satan being equal.

Calling out bigotry and racism in any form is the right move. Jewish people standing up for themselves against easily disproved lies and unprovoked attacks from famous people shouldn’t be controversial. Whitlock’s moved further from reality as his career has gone on, as the one-time Colin Cowherd fill-in now has been relegated to FOX News’ airwaves. He’s a rotating guest of Tucker Carlson’s, who’s embodied right-wing politics and all of its misinformation in recent years, to talk sports. Little by little, the news division at FOX News has left, opening the door for unvetted guests like Whitlock to spew whatever conspiracy he chooses. As the network’s Black conservative voice, Whitlock has become a shield to excuse the bigotry aired daily. The Jewish people have been accused of trying to control the media or society at-large, but I can’t remember any Jew making government policy based on Judaism’s teachings. And our Second Gentlemen, Doug Emhoff, is Jewish.

Ye and Whitlock are connected through their bigotted remarks. How much personal beliefs and clout intersect in saying disparaging things about Jewish people is unknown, and shouldn’t matter, because both of their messages never should’ve reached the public. Hateful comments that Jewish institutions deal with because of instances like West’s comments and Whitlock’s tweet spread instantly. The Holocaust Museum of Los Angeles offered Kanye a private tour earlier this month, which he rejected, leading to the museum being the target of plenty of antisemitic messages. I could have a common ending to this story, clamoring for Whitlock to do better, but should we expect that, especially when it’d hurt his brand? And that’s all that matters to him now, right? No apology will be forthcoming. And that’s exactly the cycle an attention whore wants, this time at the expense of the Jewish community. And it’s disgusting. 



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