UTA’s Jeremy Zimmer Joins Calls to Boycott Kanye West, Pointing to Rising Anti-Semitism – Deadline

Jeremy ZimmerCo-founder and CEO of the United Talent Agency, he is the latest Hollywood celebrity to speak out against Kanye West’s controversial allegations of alleged mistreatment by Jews, which he has been compounding in media interviews.

Zimmer addressed the topic Sunday in an email to agency staff titled “The Rise of Anti-Semitism and Hate,” a copy of which was obtained by the deadline. In it, Zimmer talks about West’s comments and the wave of anti-Semitism that followed, from supportive signs hung on Interstate 405 in Los Angeles to anti-Semitic flyers distributed in Los Angeles neighborhoods.

Zimmer listed the banners and flyers as well as the recent endorsement by the Wellesley College student newspaper of Boston’s controversial “Mapping Project” as behaviors that “ignite bigotry, and should not be tolerated.”

“As a company we advocate for a variety of voices and ideas. But we cannot support hate speech, bigotry or anti-Semitism. Please support Kanye West County. Powerful voices of hate often drive people to act of hate.”

Zimmer’s comments come on the heels of those of Ari Emmanuel, CEO of Endeavor Editorial in the Financial Times Earlier this week, he called on companies to stop doing business with West. West has since been abandoned by one of his top business partners, fashion powerhouse Balenciaga.

Here is Zimmer’s note:

It saddens me to write that we are once again seeing a rise in anti-Semitism in our communities, fueled by Kanye’s comments which led to an incident in Los Angeles yesterday where hateful signs were put up on Interstate 405.

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Unfortunately, anti-Semitism, racism and many forms of hatred and intolerance are part of the fabric of society. In general, they live as a plague that undermines the health of societies and is combated through understanding, tolerance and the common good of most people.

But throughout history, some have used their public program to loudly launch plague and spread infection to dangerous effect. Kanye is the last to do so, and we see how his words encourage others to amplify their vile beliefs. I’ve also seen copies of horrific anti-Semitic fliers left this weekend at home doors in Los Angeles neighborhoods, showing that 405 signs aren’t the end of it.

Equally disturbing is what is happening on college campuses, where anxiety and debate about Zionism turns into veiled anti-Semitism. Wellesley College has recently been at the epicenter of this dilemma. Wellesley newspaper recently supported a mapping project showing nearby Jewish-owned businesses, and suggesting their boycott. The assumption is that because they are owned by Jews, they must be anti-Palestine. This is the kind of dangerous thinking that can fuel anti-Semitism and hatred, and there are examples of this in other schools.

Whether it’s banners on 405 in Los Angeles, flyers on doorsteps, mapping of Jewish businesses in Boston, or walking with blankets and hoods, all of these behaviors ignite the embers of bigotry, and should not be tolerated.

As a company, we advocate for a wide range of voices and ideas. But we cannot support hate speech, bigotry or anti-Semitism. Please support Kanye West County. Oftentimes, strong voices of hate cause people to do unpleasant things. Let’s not hesitate to think this time it’s different.

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