Emotions can run high while discussing sensitive subjects such as race, with political commentator Angela Rye being moved to tears on CNN Tonight with Don Lemon during a discussion on racist Republicans running for office, emboldened by President Trump’s own prejudice.
Rye, Former U.S. Representative David Jolly and Republican political commentator Alice Stewart all weighed in on the matter, with Jolly, a Republican, admitting the right has a problem with calling out its own when it comes to ethically questionable viewpoints and behavior, especially as it pertains to race.
“I hate these conversations because it forces Republicans to confront a reality that I believe, that the president is racist. Whether that is a result of some type of financial elitism, whether it is because of being born on third base due to white privilege or whether it is a part of Steve Bannon’s nationalism. This is why traditional Republicans struggle with his leadership. We can’t forgive it. We can’t normalize it. We can’t suggest that he can be the figure of a party that we subscribe to. It’s heartbreaking. It’s not an easy conversation. It sucks. But this is the president and he is the leader of the Republican party and he continues to peddle what is very clearly racist tendencies.”
Moved by the conservative’s honesty, Rye thanked the former Congressman for holding his party accountable, crying over her frustration with the right and being labeled “racist” herself simply because she will not stand for it.
“I just want to say, Congressman, I wish that the new members, folks that have followed in your footsteps, could at least acknowledge that. That’s all so many of us are saying. And at this point I’m emotional because it’s like being constantly gaslit. I’m being constantly told every day I’m on air that I’m racist because I call out racism. That is maddening to me, and I’m crying about it because it’s crazy … So I want to say, I commend you for saying what you said. It means the world to me.”
Rye took to Instagram to further explain the moment, saying she cried “tears of frustration,” while, once again, thanking Jolly for keeping it 100.
“We live in an era of constant gaslighting. It has brought many of us to the point of SHOCK and relief when someone acknowledges truth. Former Congressman Jolly was a hero to me tonight. I cried tears of frustration, but also hope. Hope that there are more Congressman Jollys who will speak truth to power and help us become a better country. We can only do that with honesty. Racism MUST DIE.”
Check out the clip below.
We live in an era of constant gaslighting. It has brought many of us to the point of SHOCK and relief when someone acknowledges truth. Former Congressman Jolly was a hero to me tonight. I cried tears of frustration, but also hope. Hope that there are more Congressman Jollys who will speak truth to power and help us become a better country. We can only do that with honesty. Racism MUST DIE.
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Born and raised in Compton, California, Jessica Bennett began her career as an intern at The Oakland Post, and later, The Source Magazine. She went on to write for respected hip hop publications such as DJ Booth and Hip Hop DX before becoming the Urban Editor of pop culture website, Wetpaint.com. She joined Ebony as the Entertainment Editor August 2017. Bennett has interviewed such names as Vanessa Williams, Spike Lee, Tyra Banks, Forest Whitaker, Magic & Cookie Johnson and several others.