Venture capitalist Tom Perkins retracted his use of the term kristallnacht to describe what’s happening to the American 1% in a Bloomberg interview on Monday.
Perkins has been at the center of a growing controversy since his weekend letter in the Wall Street Journal, in which he said there were parallels between the persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany and the way rich people are treated in the U.S.
The multimillionaire faced backlash in the wake of his statements and later apologized in a letter to the Anti-Defamation League. Though Perkins said kristallnacht was a “terrible word to have chosen,” he said he doesn’t regret the message he was trying to get across.
“I guess my point was that when you start to use hatred against a minority it can get out of control,” Perkins said. “It’s absurd to demonize the rich for doing what the rich do, and getting richer by creating opportunity for others.”
Kristallnacht, also referred to as “Night of the Broken Glass,” was an overnight campaign in 1938 against Jews in Nazi Germany and parts of Austria, during which 91 people were killed and 30,000 more were sent to concentration camps.
Watch the full interview below: