Trevor Noah clapped back at Joe Rogan after the podcast host made remarks about Blackness on the Jan. 25 episode of his podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience.”
Rogan was speaking with his guest, psychology professor Jordan Peterson, about race when Peterson recalled when professor Michael Eric Dyson called him a “mean, angry white man.”
The two discussed whether or not Dyson was Black because of his skin tone, and Rogan noted he himself was more tan than white. The podcast host then spoke on using “black” as a descriptive for Black people.
“Well, isn’t that weird? The Black and white thing is so strange because the shades are such a spectrum of shades of people. Unless you are talking to someone who is, like, 100 percent African from the darkest place where they are not wearing any clothes all day and they have developed all of that melanin to protect themselves from the sun, even the term Black is weird. When you use it for people who are literally my color, it becomes very strange.”
Noah mocked the statements on “The Daily Show” and pretended to be shocked to learn that he was no longer a Black man, because according to Rogan, he was more of a caramel color.
“Oh my God! I’m not Black! I’m… not Black! Joe Rogan’s right! I’m like a caramel mocha frappuccino. This changes everything. … This changes everything!”
Noah then ran off the set and police sirens began to flash. The talk show host returned to his desk on the stage and said, “The police said I’m Black.”
He went on to explain to Rogan that both men were indeed white. The comedian also noted that it wasn’t Black folks who came up with calling people Black, it was white folks.
“Black people didn’t call themselves Black. You understand that, right? It’s not like Black people were like ‘we’re Black.’ No. In Africa, we have tribes, Zulu, Xhosa, Baganda, Igbo…. Wakandands,” he said. “But then white people got there, and they’re like, ‘Wow, There’s a lot of Black people here. Lot of Black people.'”
Noah then reminded Rogan and Peterson of the one-drop rule created by slave owners.
“Yeah, then in America, they invented a rule that if you had one drop of Black blood in you, that makes you Black, which defined how you were treated by the government and by society.”
Dyson also spoke on the matter with journalist Don Lemon on CNN and said that the two men proved their whiteness during the podcast. Rogan and Peterson “unsuccessfully challenged my Blackness, they damn sure proved their whiteness — indifferent to history, oblivious to truth and indifferent to reality.”
“This is the same kind of ignorance that fuels the belief that [Critical Race Theory] is being taught in elementary schools,” he continued. “This is the same kind of ignorance that would have us believe that 1619 is anti-democratic, anti-American project.”
“This is the nature of the whiteness we continually confront. This is willful ignorance. This is not, ‘Oh my God, I just don’t understand it. It’s just too complicated.’ No, what’s too complicated is to acknowledge your whiteness. Your privilege. Your perspective. The shades through which you view the world and the ways in which whiteness provides a kind of lens through which we view it.”
You can watch the clip with Trevor Noah speaking on Joe Rogan below.
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