NBC has pulled an episode of hit sitcom Nurses from its streaming services following widespread backlash over an ‘anti-Semitic’ scene featuring a Hasidic Jew.
The episode – which originally aired on the network February 9 – has received renewed attention on social media amid controversy over a separate ‘anti-Jewish’ joke on NBC’s Saturday Night Live last week.
The scene from Nurses features an Orthodox Jewish character named Ezriel refusing a bone graft from a ‘goyim, an Arab or a woman’.
Goyim is a Yiddish word for a non-Jewish person, and is often used in a pejorative manner.
‘I don’t consent. It’s God who heals what he creates,’ Ezriel states in the scene, much to the frustration of doctors who appear to view him as prejudiced and anti-science.
Several prominent media figures took to Twitter slamming the scene for being factually inaccurate.
‘For those of you unfamiliar with Jewish law, which puts precedent on healing and saving lives, there is no prohibition on the kind of bone graft in this clip,’ American Jewish Committee head Seffi Kogen tweeted
He declared: ‘I think this is the most anti-Semitic thing I have ever seen in a TV show’.
An NBC official told DailyMail.com that they have pulled the episode from their digital platforms and it will not air on television again in the future.
They also stressed that the series was acquired from an external studio in Canada, and is not an original NBC network series.
The network has spoken with several national Jewish groups in recent days, and is continuing to have conversations with them.
NBC has pulled an episode of hit sitcom Nurses from its streaming services following widespread backlash over an ‘anti-Semitic’ scene featuring a Hasidic Jew
The NBC official stressed that the series was acquired from an external studio in Canada, and is not an original NBC network series
Jewish groups have not taken kindly to the scene, with the Simon Wiesenthal Center stating: ‘Orthodox Jews are targeted for violent hate crimes in the city of New York. Jews are [the] number one target of hate crimes in the U.S. This is no slip of the tongue. It was a vile, cheap attack masquerading as TV drama. What’s NBC going to do about it?’
Elsewhere, right-wing commentator Ben Shapiro joined in the outrage, posting on Twitter: ‘This is straight up anti-Semitism. There is NOTHING in Jewish law that remotely approaches anything the Jews say in this clip.’
Former New York Times columnist Bari Weiss added: ‘This is disgusting’.
Meanwhile, another Jewish Twitter user chimed in with a personal anecdote.
‘I have a very good Jewish friend whose life was saved by a kidney donation from a Christian stranger. She read about his situation on Facebook and decided to save his life with one of her organs. The idea that we Jews wouldn’t accept such generosity is anti-Semitism straight up,’ they wrote.
The scene attracted the ire of hundred of Twitter users, including prominent commentators Ben Shapiro and Bari Weiss
Michael Che is in hot water for a joke on Saturday Night Live deemed to be anti-Semitic
The controversy comes just days after two Jewish organizations are demanding an apology from Saturday Night Live star Michael Che after a joke he made on the NBC variety show last week.
During the show’s ‘Weekend Update’ segment, which Che co-hosts with Colin Jost, Che made light of the vaccination efforts taking place in Israel.
‘Israel is reporting that they’ve vaccinated half of their population,’ Che says as he sets up the joke.
‘I’m going to guess it’s the Jewish half,’ Che concluded.
The joke immediately started an uproar, with accusations that the joke was anti-Semitic.
The American Jewish Committee (AJC) quickly began circulating a petition Saturday Night Live ‘retract its outrageous claim and apologize immediately.’
‘The claim is categorically false: every Israeli, regardless of religion or ethnicity, is eligible for the COVID vaccine, and more than two thirds of Israel’s Arab citizens over 60 have already been vaccinated,’ the petition reads.
‘Saturday Night Live’s ‘joke’ isn’t just untrue – it’s dangerous, a modern twist on a classic anti-Semitic trope that has inspired the mass murder of countless Jews throughout the centuries.
‘In the Middle Ages, thousands of Jews were burnt at the stake after being blamed for the Black Death and accused of protecting only themselves.
‘In the 20th century, the Nazis accused Jews of spreading disease and seized on that falsehood to justify imprisoning Jews in ghettos and carrying out the mass murder of European Jewry.’
Israel is seen worldwide as one of the vaccination leaders against the COVID-19
The Christian Science Monitor reports 43 percent of Israel’s Arab residents 60 and over have been vaccinated, compared with 75 percent of Jewish residents belonging to the same age group.
The disparity is likely linked to either the Arab population’s mistrust of the Israeli government or the geographical divide.
Nevertheless, Israel is attempting to improve its vaccination rates for various religious groups.
Vaccinations are ongoing in Israel, which is seen as a leader in the fight against COVID-19