Condoleezza Rice shut down a NBC reporter this week and silenced her after she attempted to imply that race relations have worsened under President Donald Trump.
During an interview with NBC’s Sheinelle Jones, Rice — who served as the nation’s first black female secretary of state under former President George W. Bush — was asked if she “feels worse now when we’re talking about race.”
Jones went on to specifically mention Trump, arguing that “discourse comes from the top-down,” starting with the president.
“It sure doesn’t feel worse than when I grew up in Jim Crow Alabama,” Rice fired back. “So let’s drop this notion that we’re worse race relations today than we were in the past. Really? That means we’ve made no progress.”
“I think the hyperbole about how much worse it is isn’t doing us any good. This country’s never going to be colorblind. We had the initial original sin of slavery. It’s still with us,” Rice added.
Jones attempted to counter, but Rice shut her down again.
“For people who say, it’s top-down, it starts with the president—” Jones began, before being cut off by Rice.
“Oh, come on, alright. I would be the first to say we need to watch our language about race. We need to watch that we don’t use dog whistles to people. But when we start saying, ‘Oh, you know, it’s worse today,’ no, they’re not,” Rice shot back.
To make her point, Rice recalled an instance when she was a child and another student didn’t want to sit next to her because of her race.
“My father said, ‘You know what? It’s just fine if they don’t want to sit next to you because you’re black—as long as they move,’” Rice said.
Jones was visibly shocked and didn’t try to test Rice again.
WATCH: Condoleezza Rice shuts down NBC reporter Sheinelle Jones’ claim that race relations are worse under President Trump. pic.twitter.com/HhuhcUlfgN
— NewsBusters (@newsbusters) 21 июня 2019 г.
In May 2018, Rice was also asked about race and politics and how she felt seeing rapper Kanye West being attacked for voicing his support for Trump.
“As a successful woman of color out there, when you see Kanye West talking like this and getting the push back that he is, what do you think?” asked host Maria Bartiromo on “Mornings with Maria.”
“Well, my view of it — first of all, I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about it, but I can say that people should be able to express their views. Not all of us have to think politically the same way,” said Rice.
“I’ve said to people sometimes, ‘I’ve been black all my life. You don’t have to tell me how to be black,’” she continued. “So I think we need to recognize that in some ways the height of prejudice is to look at somebody and think you know what they think because of the color of their skin.”
“And so I hope we get to the point where people get to express their views and you can agree with them or disagree with them … that, after all, is what it means to be an American is to have the ability to say what you think,” she added.