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Daily Beast

Daily Beast’s entertainment reporter slammed new Jeopardy! host Mayim Bialik’s support for Israel; anti-Zionist tweet remains online.

By Pesach Benson, United With Israel

Facing criticism from Jewish groups, The Daily Beast amended an article that labeled the IDF as “genocidal” and editors said they would review the news site’s editorial standards.

The article by entertainment reporter Tirhakah Love, published on Thursday, slammed Jeopardy! for selecting actress Mayim Bialik as the popular TV game show’s new co-host. Mike Richards, one of the show’s producers, will host the daily program while the 45-year-old Bialik will host prime time and spin-off specials.

The piece mostly denounced Bialik for her views on vaccinations and the Harvey Weinstein scandal and questioned why the show could not have chosen “an endearing Black woman, a well-read Black man, or even its most successful contestant to helm America’s foremost intellect-based game show.”

Love also attacked Bialik’s support for the “genocidal” Israeli military.

“Speaking of gods and shady behavior, Bialik loudly proclaimed her donation toward bulletproof vests for the genocidal Israeli Defense Forces back in 2014 just out of ‘a need to do something.’ After facing backlash, she quieted for a time until May of this year, where she self-identified as a ‘liberal Zionist’ who, like many other celebrities, spouted bothsidesism,” Love wrote.

Jewish groups blasted The Daily Beast. In a tweet directed at its outgoing editor-in-chief Noah Shachtman, the American Jewish Committee tweeted, “.@NoahShachtman, you said in 2018 that @TheDailyBeast reporters ‘shouldn’t do anything that is hate speech or in any way is gonna offend a group.’ Then you hired @tirhakahlove, who said Jewish liberation is a form of white supremacy and smeared the IDF as ‘genocidal.’ What gives?”

The AJC was referring to an interview in which Shachtman told Vox, “Our general rule is: A, you’re reporters, not cheerleaders. So don’t be an open partisan; B, don’t do something that … I mean, obviously, don’t do anything that’s like hate speech or in any way is gonna offend a group. Because if it’s ethnicity or gender, or what have you … Then C is don’t get your fellow reporters in trouble.”

Questioned by readers on Friday, Love simply poured fuel on the fire.

He tweeted on Friday, “the Zionists should really stop emailing me cus girl I do not care.” In a later tweet, Love described Zionism as “a faux ethno-religious liberation movement that is staunchly imperialistic as it’s an extension of british colonialism and an articulation of white supremacy.”

National Public Radio‘s media correspondent David Folkenflik called out Love on the latter tweet, saying, “Daily Beast reporter offers anti-Semitic personal tweet goes out of his way to call Israeli Defense Forces ‘genocidal’ in formal DB article about Jeopardy co-host.”

The tweet added, “quite a gift to @NoahShachtman’s successors.”

The Daily Beast amended the article on Monday, and an editor’s note at the bottom reads, “This story has been updated to replace the word genocidal in reference to the IDF.”

Asked by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency to comment, The Daily Beast responded, “The story has been updated to replace the word genocidal in reference to the IDF.”

The Daily Beast is developing an editorial standard for future use of the word,” it added.

The JTA noted that the website didn’t respond to questions about Love’s tweets.



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