Dear DeSean Jackson,
I am an Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, and I forgive you.
You posted some extremely offensive comments on your instagram feed that were false quotes from Adolf Hitler, the man who was behind the murder of my great grandparents, great aunts and and uncles, and 6 million of my distant relatives.
You made the Instagram post, I believe, not because you are a hateful anti-Semite, but because of ignorance. You realized how offensive it was, and issued a heartfelt apology video, and post on Twitter, pledging to learn more about the issues we face.
In the same way that White people cannot relate to the struggle of the Black community and the racism they face, it is likely hard for people who are not Jewish to understand and connect to our history of being oppressed, expelled, and murdered.
In the same way I adamantly reject “cancelling” White people who out of ignorance make insensitive comments about the plight of the Black community, I would also adamantly reject anyone from “cancelling” you for your lack of understanding of the Jewish community and our difficult history.
In the same way that I hope the likes of Drew Brees and Vic Fangio can be forgiven for their insensitive comments, I hope that you can be forgiven for yours.
We are all human, and we all make mistakes. You made a big mistake. You apologized, and it felt real. It seems like you learned from this experience and are motivated to better understand the Jewish community and our history.
G-d willing you can use your platform to spread awareness about the rising threat of anti-Semitism, and can be instrumental in creating more harmony between our communities, and can shine your light to the world.
Rabbi Danny Wolfe