A white Joe Biden supporter is on a digital apology tour after she told a Black woman she had “no standing” to quote Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. while critiquing the former vice president.
Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen made the gaffe during a Thursday night appearance on CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time,” during which she sparred with Bernie Sanders campaign co-chair Nina Turner. They were discussing Sanders’ and Biden’s voting records.
Rosen, a white woman, had an issue with a comment Turner made comparing Biden to the “white moderate” King critiqued in “Letters From A Birmingham Jail.”
“Nina referenced Dr. Martin Luther King before, saying that he said from the Birmingham jail that we should be concerned about white moderates,” she told Turner. “That’s actually not what Martin Luther King said.”
“He did say that. How are you going to tell me — about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Are you kidding me?” Turner responded.
Rosen wouldn’t let it go and insisted Biden is not silent.
Turner stood by her statement and Rosen responded by questioning her credibility.
“Don’t use Martin Luther King against Joe Biden. You don’t have that standing,” Rosen said.
“Don’t tell me what kind of standing that I have as a black woman in America. How dare you,” Turner shot back.
Rosen’s audacity angered many viewers.
“I just watched that Nina Turner and Hilary Rosen segment again and I’m even more enraged. Rosen attempting to correct Turner, a Black woman, on quoting Dr. King is peak white feminism. And she was WRONG!” wrote law professor Preston Mitchum.
“Hilary Rosen @hilaryr, Dr. King was speaking about individuals exactly like you and Biden. Nina @ninaturner was 100% correct. Your shameless, racist condescension on CNN was just that…shameless,” tweeted another viewer.
“Watch it for yourself. @hilaryr was wrong. Full stop. She said Nina didn’t have THE STANDING to quote MLK which is PEAK white woman. Then turned around and referenced “angry black women” in her faux apology. Hilary needs to watch from the sidelines now,” stated #oscarssowhite creator April Reign.
Even Sanders chimed in to chastise Rosen.
“@JoeBiden must accept responsibility for his surrogate telling our campaign co-chair Senator @NinaTurner that she doesn’t have standing to invoke the words of Dr. King,” Sanders tweeted. “That is unacceptable and Joe must apologize to Nina and all the people of color supporting our campaign.”
Some critics had an issue with host Chris Cuomo, who butted in to urge Turner to listen to Rosen but was silent when the roles were reversed.
“The idea of a white moderate trying to lecture and scold Nina Turner about what Dr. King said of the white moderate is in of itself ironic and infuriating, but then you add Chris Cuomo’s paternalistic tone. What a nightmare,” tweeted writer Michael Arceneaux.
“Black women deal with this sh-t all the time. notice how nina let this lady speak without interrupting, but as soon as nina talks, gets interrupted, and tried to defend herself, Cuomo gives the lecture about tone” stated journalist Malaika Jabali. “We live these macroaggressions.”
The hoopla caused Rosen to tweet an apology in which she called Turner an “angry Black woman.”
“On air thurs I said my colleague @ninaturner didn’t have standing to use MLK Jr. That was wrong. I am sorry for saying those words,” Rosen wrote. “Pls no need to defend me and attack angry black women. They have standing. I always need to listen more than I talk. We rise together.”
The apology started another dragging and Rosen deleted it. Another apology was posted in its place.
“I’m horrified that anyone would think i would call Nina Turner ‘an angry black woman’ I would NEVER!! After the TV hit last night, I was getting tons of ugly messages to keep fighting her using that phrase,” Rosen wrote. “I was trying to tell people to STOP. Cause I KNEW I needed to apologize.”