Minister Louis Farrakhan is defending rapper Kanye West after the Anti-Defamation League called his recent remarks about Jews, power and money “classic anti-Semitism.”
Farrakhan told followers in his weekly video address Saturday that West shouldn’t apologize because he was only speaking the truth about the “powerful” Jewish people.
West said during a radio interview last month that President Barack Obama isn’t delivering fully on his job performance because “black people don’t have the same level of connections as Jewish people.”
Afterward, Anti-Defamation League National Director Abraham Foxman said West was repeating a longtime stereotype.
“There it goes again, the age-old canard that Jews are all-powerful and control the levers of power in government. As a celebrity with a wide following, Kanye West should know better,” Foxman said. “We hope that he will take responsibility for his words, understand why they are so offensive, and apologize to those he has offended.”
Farrakhan is urging West not to apologize for his comments, encouraging him to stand firm instead.
“You are telling Kanye West he should know better. He does know better, and that’s why he said what he said,” Farrakhan said. “Kanye West, don’t bow to the pressure to apologize to anybody. You said nothing wrong.”
Farrakhan continued, saying Jewish people are “powerful” and that they do have societal control.
The Nation of Islam leader also offered up his qualifications for speaking out and defending West: “I am directly from the Christ and the Messiah, so what I tell you has more weight than anything that these enemies might want to say.”
West’s comments came during a November radio appearance on New York City’s WWPR in which he expounded upon his views on wealth and power.
“Man, let me tell you something about George Bush and oil money and Obama and no money. People want to say Obama can’t make these moves or he’s not executing. That’s ’cause he ain’t got those connections,” West said. “Black people don’t have the same level of connections as Jewish people. Black people don’t have the same connection as oil people.”
He continued, “You know we don’t know nobody that got a nice house. You know we don’t know nobody with paper like that we can go to when we down. You know they can just put us back or put us in a corporation. You know we ain’t in situation. Can you guarantee that your daughter can get a job at this radio station? But if you own this radio station, you could guarantee that. That’s what I’m talking about.”
(H/T: Jewish Daily Forward)