Tyler Perry Shares Stories of Jewish Allyship to Black Community Amid Kanye West’s Antisemitism
“This first photo is of my mother with these adorable children she worked with at a Jewish community center,” the filmmaker wrote, captioning a post on Instagram depicting his mother’s class of 3-year-olds at the Jewish Community Center Nursery School. “I remember her coming home from work one day devastated because there was a bomb threat and my mother was horrified that there were people who wanted to blow up a building full of children because they were Jewish.
“I blurred their faces but think about that. It brought her back to that pain of having to live through the bombing of a church in Alabama where three little black girls died,” he continued, tying the moment emotionally to his mom’s experience during the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
Perry then went on to explain that his mom “made sure that I knew the commonality of what black people and Jewish people have endured” and made a moving argument about the crucial role allies can play in helping marginalized people regardless of race, ethnicity or creed.
“She not only taught me about slavery but she also taught me about the Holocaust,” he wrote. “But in teaching me about all our common pains she also taught me about the allies that Jewish people have been for black people. Case in point, look at the founding members of the NAACP – it took allies to get us to a better place in this country and those allies didn’t look like us.”
In another slide, Perry shares photos of Andrew Goodman, James Earl Chaney and Michael Henry Schwerner, three civil rights activists from New York who were abducted and killed in what were called the Mississippi Burning Murders. The trio had been working to register Black voters in Mississippi at the time.
“It was Jewish allies that were murdered in Mississippi trying to help us get the right to vote,” Perry continued. “I can fill this post with so many examples including my own allies that I work with today who have helped me grow a business that has allowed me to hire more black people than most businesses in Hollywood. No one makes it alone. Refuse hate!!”
While Perry didn’t refer to directly to Ye in the post, the rapper has created his own downward spiral in recent weeks by making increasingly disturbing antisemitic claims in the press, prompting multiple brands, from Balenciaga and Adidas to Gap and Foot Locker, to cut ties with him.
Read Perry’s powerful post about allyship below.