Kyrie Irving became embroiled in a verbal spat with a report over his controversial tweet, which contained links to a movie based on a book ‘containing anti-Semitic disinformation’.
The Brooklyn Nets suffered their fifth loss of the season against the Indiana Pacers, losing 125-116 Saturday night, however Irving’s press conference was dominated with questions about the controversy.
The guard grabbed attention earlier this week for publicizing the 2018 film ‘Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America’ on social media with a link to its Amazon page.
Magazine Rolling Stone has labeled the book with the same name, released in 2015, which the film is based on as ‘venomously anti-Semitic’.
Publication Rolling Stone pointed out that the book by Ronald Dalton Jr. comments that ‘many famous high-ranking Jews’ have ‘admitted to ‘worship[ing] Satan or Lucifer.’
When a reporter began to ask about the ‘promotion’ of the movie and book, Irving sparked a testy exchange.
Kyrie Irving became embroiled in a verbal spat with a report over his controversial tweet
The guard shared links to a movie based on book ‘containing anti-Semitic disinformation’
The Brooklyn Nets star caught the attention for publicizing the 2018 film ‘Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America’ on social media with a link to its Amazon page
‘Can you please stop calling it promotion?’ Irving said. ‘What am I promoting?’
The reporter then began to explain that Irving had shared it to his platform but the guard quickly interrupted, asking: ‘But do you see me promoting it? Yeah I put it out there just like you put things out there right? You put things out there for a living right? Great, so let’s move on.’
The reporter tried to interject again but Irving continued to talk over him, saying: ‘Let’s move on. Don’t dehumanize me up here. I’m another human being. I can post whatever I want. So say that and shut it down and move on to the next question’
They then tried to interject once again, saying, ‘Kyrie, you have to understand…’ but Irving snapped back, ‘I don’t have to understand anything from you.’
The athlete then accused the reporter of grilling him so he could put the exchange on Instagram and ‘be famous again.’
Both the NBA and Nets owner Joe Tsai released statement condemning Irving’s post, however neither appear to have been successful in convincing him to take the post down and he seemed to double down on his stance.
He said: ‘Out of all the judgment that people got out of me posting — without talking to me — I respect what Joe said, but there has a lot to do with not ego or pride with how proud I am be African heritage but also to be living as a free black man here in America knowing the historical complexities for me to get here.
‘So I’m not going to stand down on anything I believe in. I’m only going to get stronger because I’m not alone. I have a whole army around me.’
He also acknowledged he was in a position of influence but claimed that anyone who criticized his posts were not his target audience.
He said: ‘I’m in a unique position to have a level of influence on my community and what I post does not mean that I support everything that has been said or everything that’s being done or I’m campaigning for anything.
The NBA released a statement , insisting hate speech of any kind is unacceptable
Nets owner Joe Tsai condemned Irving’s actions on Friday and wants to speak to him
Tsai (center) said ‘this is bigger than basketball’ in his response to Irving’s posts on Friday
‘All I do is post things for my people or my community and those that it is actually going to impact. Anybody else who has criticism, it clearly wasn’t meant for them.
‘I don’t expect understanding from a media conglomerate group that sincerely talks about the game of basketball and then brings up religion as if it’s correlated at times when it is convenient for people to bring it up.’
Irving explained that he had shared the movie’s Amazon page as he had come to it because his name ‘translates in the Hebrew language as Yahweh’ and he had searched the site for Yahweh.
When asked if he has watched the film, Irving insisted that he had but when pressed if he therefore could understand why people implied the work had anti-Semitic leanings in it, he responded: ‘We’re in 2022, it’s on Amazon a public platform, whether you want to go watch it is up to you.
The 30-year-old spoke to the media following the Nets’ 125-116 drumming against the Pacers
‘There’s things being posted everyday. I am no different from the next human being, so don’t treat me any different. You guys come in here and make up this powerful influence that I have over top of the adultery of, you cannot post that. Why not? Why not?
‘This is what is here, it is on a public platform. Did I do anything illegal?’
Irving had taken to Twitter before the game Saturday to claim the criticism of his tweet was not justified and does not reflect reality.
‘I am an OMNIST and I meant no disrespect to anyone’s religious beliefs,’ Irving wrote, referring to a belief in all religions.
‘The ‘Anti-Semitic’ label that is being pushed on me is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth I live in everyday.’
The NBA star addressed the tweet Saturday as he claimed the anti-Semitic label ‘being pushed on him’ is not justified and does not reflect the reality or truth he lives in everyday
During the press conference, Irving also addressed his post from six weeks ago in which he shared to his Instagram story a 2002 video of Alex Jones decrying a ‘New World Order.’
He said that he doesn’t support Jones or his Sandy Hook hoax claims, but did say that the video he shared was about ‘occults’ in America and ‘it’s true.’
‘I do not stand with Alex Jones – position, narrative, court case that he had with Sandy Hook or any of the kids that felt like that had to relive trauma or the parents that had to relive trauma or to be dismissive to all the lives that were lost during that tragic event.
‘My post was a post from Alex Jones that he did in the early ’90sor late ’90s about secret societies in America of occults, and it’s true.
‘I wasn’t identifying with anything of being a campaignist for Alex Jones or anything. It’s just here are posts … and it’s funny, it’s actually hilarious because out of all the things I posted that day that was the one post everyone chose to see. It just goes back to the way our world is and works. I’m not here to complain about it. I just exist.’
Irving shared a video by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from 2002 to his Instagram story last month. The 20-year-old video, entitled ‘Never Forget – Alex Jones Tried To Warn Us,’ refers to a ‘New World Order’ that would ‘release plagues’
The 30-year-old raised eyebrows last month for sharing a video by conspiracy theorist Jones from 2002 to his Instagram story.
The video, entitled ‘Never Forget – Alex Jones Tried To Warn Us,’ refers to a ‘New World Order’ that would ‘release plagues’.
In the video Jones said: ‘Yes there have been corrupt empires. Yes they manipulate. Yes there are secret societies. Yes there have been oligarchies throughout history.
‘And yes, today in 2002, there is a tyrannical organization calling itself the New World Order… by releasing diseases and viruses and plagues upon us, we then basically get shoved into their system.’
The 2002 clip of Jones – ordered to pay nearly $1billion to the families of the victims of the Sandy Hook mass shooting – was one of several videos shared to Irving’s story at the time.
Irving, who serves as vice president on the player’s association’s executive committee, posted videos which discussed a range of topics, including ‘the saturation of the media with celebratory posts about the late Queen Elizabeth II’ and decolonization.
Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones was ordered to pay nearly $1billion to the families of the victims of the Sandy Hook mass shooting
Jones reportedly made $232,000 in a single day when the InfoWars website published the story that the FBI said that there were no deaths reported
Irving is no stranger to conspiracies having long been willing to embrace theories such as the earth being flat or that the moon landing was staged.
The unvaccinated basketball star was unable to play in most of Brooklyn’s home games last season because he did not meet a New York City vaccine mandate for workplaces.
In October 2021, he started following and liking Instagram posts from a conspiracy theorist who claimed that ‘secret societies’ are implanting vaccines in a plot to connect black people to a master computer for ‘a plan of Satan.’
In apologizing for his endorsement of the Flat Earth ‘theory’ back in October 2018, Irving admitted to being a conspiracy theorist.
‘I was definitely at that time, ”I’m a big conspiracy theorist. You can’t tell me anything.” I’m sorry about all that,’ Irving said.
‘Even if you believe in that, don’t come out and say that stuff. That’s for intimate conversations because perception and how you’re received, it changes. I’m actually a smart-ass individual,’ he explained, 18 months after he first told an interviewer that ‘The Earth is flat. The Earth is flat. … It’s right in front of our faces.’