Wiley responds to accusations of anti-Semitic tweets

Jennifer Savin
·3-min read
Photo credit: Karwai Tang - Getty Images
Photo credit: Karwai Tang - Getty Images

From Cosmopolitan

Rapper Wiley has responded to accusations of anti-Semitic tweets by apologising, saying that his posts came about after falling out with his Jewish manager. His tweets sparked major backlash, against both him and Twitter for not removing them promptly enough (they have since been taken down and his account suspended).

"I'm not racist," Wiley said during an interview with Sky News. "My comments should not have been directed to all Jews or Jewish people. I want to apologise for generalising, and I want to apologise for comments that were looked at as anti-Semitic."

He continued on to say, "I just want to apologise for generalising and going outside of the people who I was talking to within the workspace and workplace I work in. I'm not racist, you know. I'm a businessman. My thing should have stayed between me and my manager, I get that."

Twitter subsequently released a statement apologising for not being quicker to take action: "We are sorry we did not move faster... We deeply respect the concerns shared by the Jewish community and online safety advocates."

Wiley's Instagram and Facebook accounts have also been taken down, after further remarks from the musician appeared on there.

Photo credit: Gus Stewart - Getty Images
Photo credit: Gus Stewart - Getty Images

One of the controversial posts from Wiley accused Jewish people of self-importance. "I'm sick of you," he wrote. In another he said he doesn't "care about Hitler, I care about black people". The Campaign Against Antisemitism referred one of his tweets to the police, saying it incited racial hatred as it included the expression 'hold corn' (slang for getting shot).

Known as 'The Godfather of Grime', Wiley is no stranger to social media controversy – having previously used Twitter to start a feud with fellow rapper Stormzy. Big Dada Records, who've worked with Wiley in the past, said following his tirade that they'd be donating royalties to campaigns to help fight anti-Semitism."We released some records by Wiley between 2007 and 2014. We fully condemn Wiley's comments and royalties from those records will be donated to campaigns that fight anti-Semitism."

The topic of anti-Semitism and how Jewish people are treated (and viewed) in society has now been pushed to the forefront, with many now researching and speaking out on the subject for the first time.

Many well-known public figures, including activist Munroe Bergdorf, have publicly shared their support for the Jewish community, writing, "Marginalised communities need to stand together AGAINST hate, not further perpetuate it. Actually at a loss with Wiley's comments. WILD. Standing in solidarity with the Jewish community. Fuck anti-Semitism."

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