September 21, 2023
Following Adidas CEO Bjørn Gulden comments that appeared to downplay the harm caused by Kanye West’s antisemitic statements last year, American Jewish Committee (AJC) CEO Ted Deutch issued the following statement:
“Antisemitism can never be rationalized. Kanye’s antisemitic tirade has caused significant harm to Jewish communities around the world and directly contributed to documented antisemitic incidents in the United States. Adidas’ CEO Bjørn Gulden’s insensitive comments call into question Adidas’ true commitment to countering antisemitism. I call on Gulden to set the record straight and demonstrate that Adidas, which was late to condemn and take action in response to Kanye’s antisemitism in the first place, is taking antisemitism seriously.”
Last year after Adidas announced it would sever ties with Kanye, AJC Berlin Director Dr. Remko Leemhuis met with senior representatives to urge them to demonstrate their commitment to combating Jew-hatred by adopting the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism.