Mar 8, 2012

I'll admit I'm one of those people who has been very critical and leery of Soledad O'Brien. I just never bought into her and her whole series on 'Black in America' did absolutely nothing to quell those doubts. But I most admit this exchange she had with the editor-in-chief with made me look at her a little differently. I'm not completely sold on her, but I may be warming up a little bit.

(Mediaite) - CNN’s Starting Point got heated Thursday as’s Editor-In-Chief Joel Pollak clashed with host Soledad O’Brien about the significance of the video of President Obama hugging a Harvard professor. O’Brien didn’t quite understand why the recently publicized video was a “bombshell.”

“What part of that was the bombshell? Because I missed it. I don’t get it,” O’Brien exclaimed. “What was a bombshell?”

“Well, the bombshell is the revelation of the relationship between Obama and Derrick Bell,” Pollak pointed out.

“Okay, so he’s a Harvard Law student and a Harvard Law Professor, yeah.” O’Brien added.

“Derrick Bell is the Jeremiah Wright of academia,” Pollak stated. “He passed away last year, but during his lifetime, he developed a theory called critical race theory, which holds that the civil rights movement was a sham and that white supremacy is the order and it must be overthrown.”

“So that is a complete misreading,” O’Brien interrupted. “I’ll stop you there for a second — then I’ll let you continue. That is a complete misreading of critical race theory. That’s an actual theory. You could Google it and some would give you a good definition. So that’s not correct. But keep going.”

“In what way is it a critical misreading?” Pollak countered. “Can you explain to me? Explain to your readers (sic) what it is,”

“I’m going to ask you to continue on,” O’Brien quickly replied. “I’m just going to point out that that is inaccurate. Keep going. Tell me what the bombshell is. I haven’t seen it yet.”

“Well, wait a minute!” Pollak interjected. “You’ve made a claim that my characterization of critical race theory as the opposite of Martin Luther King is inaccurate. You’re telling your viewers that, but you’re not telling them what it is.”

“Critical race theory looks into the intersection of race and politics and the law and as a legal academic who would study this and write about it, he would advance the theory about what exactly happened when the law was examined in terms of racial politics,” O’Brien explained. “There is no white supremacy in that. It is a theory. It’s an academic theory and as one of the leading academics at Harvard Law School, he was one of the people as part of that conversation. So that is a short definition.”

“I’m glad we’ve got you saying that on tape because that’s a complete misrepresentation,” Pollak hit back. “Critical race theory is all about white supremacy. Critical race theory holds that civil rights laws are ineffective, that racial equality is impossible, because the legal and Constitutional in America is white supremacist.”

The two argued over the relevancy of critical race theory to the conversation, with O’Brien trying to move things back to the “bombshell” and Pollak saying, “You can’t derail this, Soledad.” O’Brien eventually concluded that Pollak wanted to make the connection between Obama and the “radical” Bell. Pollak accused O’Brien of obfuscating the real issue, which was the media sweeping things under the rug, and O’Brien began to accuse Pollak of still not understanding critical race theory.

Then Panelist Jay Thomas interjected. He asked if Pollak was afraid that a secret black movement was going to rise up and murder him. Pollak responded by saying he was just accused of being a racist and afraid of black people, but answered Thomas’ query anyway.

“At every point in his life when he could have followed the path of Martin Luther King, he threw in his lot with the Jeremiah Wrights and the Derrick Bells of the world,” Pollak said.

GBTV’s Amy Holmes then chimed in, wondering why the raw video didn’t surface in 2008.

“Of what?!” O’Brien exclaimed. “Of hugging Derrick Bell, the renowned Harvard Law Professor?”

Holmes countered by saying that it should have been something, “for the public to decide, not the media to decide,” and that the media, “did not allow this to be put into the public square.” She then made a stellar observation that she was a vegetarian in college and now enjoys prime rib. It’s not about digging something up on Obama, Holmes explained, it’s about the media not putting it out there.

And for the record, Amy Holmes is wrong. The video was shown in it's entirety on PBS during the 2008 election. Now granted people don't watch PBS the way they should doesn't mean it wasn't shown.


  1. you're warming up to her?

    she looked like a complete idiot today.

    which interview were you watching?

  2. She is not correct about CRT. Professor Bell's own writings define it closer to how Pollak described it.

  3. Well I see the White Nationalist have landed on the Savvy Sista and still aren't bold enough to post their names.... I think it really hurts your poor little bigoted feelings that Black people can read and analyze... Having read several of Bell's books including his writings on Critical Race Theory, his conclusion what that the laws passed during the Civil Rights error were unnecessary and his reasoning for that is because the Constitution granted all citizens individual rights and liberties so why should Black people need special laws to give them what they were already supposed to have in the first place???
    And he's 100% right... Uneducated trolls and bigots want to believe that the first Black people on this continent came in shackles and they are wrong... By the time the Constitution was written there were already Black citizens so when the forefathers contemplated citizenship they were not just talking about White men... I know it burn you all up to find out after all these years that you are NOT the chosen ones but it is what it is

    White Supremacy, which in and of itself is a grand fallacy, only entered the picture when your greedy forefathers discovered that it was much cheaper to "own" people than it was to stick to the indentured servitude they had been using and then they allowed their love of money to corrupt the sanctity of law and made stupid court decisions and rules...
    i started this website to teach Black children about their history but clearly the new White Nationalist movement needs to bone up on some American History too because your white sheets and overall ignorance are starting to show... What's this??? the story of a Black man living in America and elected to politics long before 1976... Don't cry yet, there are many more where that came from just give me a little time

  4. Do you know the white guy is married to a black woman?

  5. What does that have to do with the price of tea in China??? President Obama's mother was White, are you cutting him any slack because of that??? And plenty of white slave owners had children with their Black slaves, those children were still considered slaves and still "owned" by their fathers and sold to other I really fail to understand your point??? I don't care if he was married to Angela Davis... it doesn't change the facts that A) he misquoted the theory behind CRT and B) the fact that the President introduced a law professor (who by the way was a phenomenal man and lawyer who placed his life in harm's way to ensure that the government truly lived up to its own laws) means absolutely nothing...

    I mean almost half of my ancestors were white so maybe tomorrow I'll wake up with blonde hair and blue eyes and not have to worry about being profiled because I'm a Black woman driving a Benz... GTFOHWTBS

  6. And so...what is your name?

    Afraid to post it because you are nothing but a bitter, bigoted, angry black chick?