You might be surprised to learn that Al Sharpton still has an MSNBC show. The serial race-baiter and tax dodger uses his show to constantly attack President Trump, and he was recently joined by Jemele Hill, who had some provocative statements to make about the President’s defense of the American flag and the National Anthem.
On Sunday’s episode of “Politics Nation with Al Sharpton,” just before the Super Bowl aired, the “Reverend” had ESPN’s Jemele Hill on as a guest. Hill has made headlines in recent months over her criticism of President Trump and anyone who criticized the anthem protesters.
Last fall, she called President Trump a “white supremacist,” a statement that only earned a reprimand from her ESPN bosses. However, she later called for a boycott of the Dallas Cowboys and criticized Jerry Jones for suggesting he would bench anthem protesters. That was a cardinal sin for ESPN – which relies on the support of NFL teams for its content. That statement earned her a two week suspension.
Her continued antics seemed to take a toll, as she was recently removed from her job as anchor of SportsCenter, the network’s flagship news show. She was reassigned to write for The Undefeated, a sister site which mixes politics with sports. Hill claims the decision to leave SportsCenter was her own.
During her MSNBC appearance, Hill claimed Donald Trump’s constant talk about respecting the anthem and American flag was a “dog whistle” with racial overtones. She called his rhetoric “racial pornopgraphy,” in an appeal to his “base.”
Hill made the comments in an appearance on MSNBC’s “Politics Nation with Al Sharpton” in response to a question about Trump’s State of the Union address.
In his speech to Congress Tuesday, Trump appeared to take a jab at players protesting during the national anthem. While acknowledging a young boy who had organized a campaign to put flags on veterans’ graves, Trump said his actions were “why we proudly stand for the national anthem.”
“I think this is going to be probably a constant theme for the president,” Hill said, “because it’s a very easy dog whistle, it’s low-hanging fruit, it’s what I like to call racial pornography because it’s a way to stoke his base.”
Hill added she thought Trump to be “weirdly brilliant because he has been able to hijack the entire conversation and to make this about patriotism and really, if anybody knew even the smallest bit of American history, they would understand that what the players have chosen to do is the most patriotic thing that you could.”
Hill, who has been at ESPN for more than a decade, sparked controversy this past September by calling Trump a “white supremacist” on Twitter, a move for which she was not suspended. A month later, Hill was benched for two weeks after calling on fans to boycott Dallas Cowboys advertisers in response to owner Jerry Jones’ comment that players who did not stand for the national anthem would not play.
“I think because there’s a lot of misinformation, a lot of people, frankly, just aren’t interested enough or care enough about the things that are important to … the players protesting,” Hill added, “it’s been easy for them to latch on to ceremony as opposed to understanding what this cause is really about.
Last month, Hill was re-assigned from her highly-touted role as co-host of ESPN’s 6 p.m. “SportsCenter” program, which the network had re-branded “SC6.” She is currently a senior columnist at The Undefeated, an ESPN site that focuses on sports and race.
Hill told Sharpton that the move was “definitely, 100 percent my choice.”
“I approached my superiors about making a change because … [moving to The Undefeated] was just really an opportunity for me to do great journalism,” she said. “I had a great year doing [SportsCenter], but it was not a fit for me because ultimately I had a lot of things that I really wanted to say and wanted to express.”
Here’s the full interview with Al Sharpton on MSNBC.