Red carpet personality Joan Rivers, who is certainly no newcomer to raising both eyebrows and tempers, is in the headlines today for an off the cuff comment she made about Heidi Klum’s Oscar night dress.
Upon seeing longtime “Project Runway” host and retired Victoria’s Secret super model Heidi Klum in the plunging gold dress she wore to the 21st Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Viewing Party Joan Rivers exclaimed, “The last time a German looked this hot was when they were pushing Jews into the ovens.”
The Holocaust reference is now costing Rivers. The Anti-Defamation League released a public press statement about the comment yesterday. In the statement and on the group’s website ADL director Abraham H. Foxman, who is himself a Holocaust survivor, called the remark “vulgar and offensive to Jews and Holocaust survivors, and indeed to all Americans.”
“There are certain things about the Holocaust that should be taboo,” Foxman continued in the statement. “This is especially true for Jews, for whom the Holocaust is still a deeply painful memory. It is vulgar and offensive for anybody to use the death of 6 million Jews and millions of others in the Holocaust to make a joke, but this is especially true for someone who is Jewish and who proudly and publicly wears her Jewishness on her sleeve.”
This is not the first time Joan Rivers has come under fire for an offhand remark about the Holocaust. Earlier this year she likened big box store Costco to “Nazi Germany” when they refused to carry copies of her book, appropriately titled, “I Hate Everyone . . . Starting With Me.”
The Heidi Klum comment was made on Monday night’s episode of E!’s “Fashion Police.” The ADL is asking E! Entertainment to make Rivers give a public apology for the comment. Similar requests made in the past have resulted in River’s telling the ADL to, “Shut the f-ck up.”
When Joan Rivers was reached for comment by The Hollywood Reporter she took a much softer approach this time, simply telling them that, “My husband lost the majority of his family at Auschwitz and I can assure you that I have always made it a point to remind people of the Holocaust through humor.”
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