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Jon Stewart clarifies comments on anti-Semiticism in Harry Potter: ‘Do not think JK Rowling is anti-Semitic’

Earlier, a clip from the companion podcast of his Apple TV+ show The Problem with Jon Stewart had him comparing the Gringotts Wizarding Bank scenes in Harry Potter books and movies with The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an early 20th-century anti-Semitic text.

By: Entertainment Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: January 7, 2022 9:03:36 am
Jon Stewart, jk rowlingJon Stewart said that his comments were said in a light-hearted vein. (Photo: Apple TV+ and JK Rowling/Facebook)

Comedian and talk show host Jon Stewart has clarified his comments about the alleged anti-Semitic elements in Harry Potter novels and movies. He said that his comments were said in a light-hearted vein and stated that he does not believe what he said.

In a video statement posted on his Twitter handle, he said, “I do not think J.K. Rowling is anti-Semitic. I did not accuse her of being anti-Semitic. I do not think the Harry Potter movies are anti-Semitic. I really love the Harry Potter movies, probably too much for a gentleman of my considerable age.”

Stewart added, “I cannot stress this enough. I am not accusing J.K. Rowling of being anti-Semitic. She need not answer to any of it. I don’t want the ‘Harry Potter’ movies censored in any way. It was a lighthearted conversation. Get a f***ing grip.”

Earlier, a clip from the companion podcast of his Apple TV+ show The Problem with Jon Stewart had Jon Stewart comparing the Gringotts Wizarding Bank scenes in Harry Potter books and movies with The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, an early 20th-century anti-Semitic text. Filled with anti-Semitic canards, the text was taught to German schoolchildren in the 1930s when the Nazis came to power.

Stewart had brought up the similarities between the depiction of Jews in the text and the Goblin bankers in Gringotts. He now says the comments were needlessly given a controversial twist by publications.

“Here’s how you know Jews are still where they are. Talking to people, here’s what I say: Have you ever seen a ‘Harry Potter’ movie? Have you ever seen the scenes in Gringotts Bank? Do you know what those folks who run the bank are? Jews! And they’re like, ‘Oh, [that illustration is] from Harry Potter!’ And you’re like, ‘No, that’s a caricature of a Jew from an anti-Semitic piece of literature.’ J.K. Rowling was like, ‘Can we get these guys to run our bank?’ It’s a wizarding world… we can ride dragons, you can have a pet owl… but who should run the bank? Jews. But what if the teeth were sharper?” he had said.

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