ESPN’s Jemele Hill stopped by ABC’s The View on Wednesday to talk about her time co-hosting the network’s SportsCenter 6 pm telecast, and she did not disappoint.
Hill became a lightning rod of criticism for those on the Right because of her critical stance on Donald Trump. Last September she called him a white supremacist.
“Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists,” she said.
The tweet and Hill’s additional comments about the protests happening around the National Football League led to her suspension by ESPN. In spite of this, Hill has continued to be an outspoken voice on social media and as a commentator on ESPN.
Hill told The View’s hosts that she stands by her position that Trump is a white supremacist, though she does not believe all of his supporters are. Instead, she said those who support him “have the benefit and privilege to be able to distance and disassociate themselves from certain issues.”
“As a woman of color, I feel vulnerable to certain behaviors, certain policies, certain things that he’s said and done,” she explained. “And so all of that was part of that response, feeling that vulnerability. If it doesn’t impact you directly or if you don’t feel that, it’s probably harder for you to understand it.”
Though she’s remained a critical public voice, Hill said she would do a few things differently, especially when it came to discussing the NFL protests and boycott.
“I probably wouldn’t do that again,” Hill said of a tweet wondering if fans should boycott NFL sponsors after Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he would punish kneeling players. “Twitter’s not a good place for nuance. And I wasn’t specifically calling for a boycott of the NFL or of Jerry Jones, but I understand how it could be interpreted that way.”
Back in January, Hill announced she was leaving SportsCenter to write for ESPN’s The Undefeated, a site focused on Black culture. Perhaps this switch will allow her to engage in the nuanced conversations that prove tricky on Twitter.
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