“The View” co-host Joy Behar said early Thursday that Republican Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) does not seem to understand the difference between racism and systemic racism.
Behar, who made the comments during an appearance on “The View,” was asked by co-host Whoopi Goldberg to weigh in on the Republican senator’s State of the Union rebuttal, during which Scott talked about race and said that the United States isn’t a racist country.
“He does not seem to understand — and a lot of them don’t seem to understand — the difference between a racist country and systemic racism,” Behar told the panel.
“Maybe it’s not a racist country, maybe Americans — the majority — are not racist. But we live in a country with systemic racism,” said Behar, who also called it “appalling” that Scott didn’t “acknowledge” the existence of systemic racism in the United States during his speech.
“At least acknowledge that there is systemic racism,” she added.
Joy Behar says Tim Scott doesn’t understand what systemic racism means pic.twitter.com/pWKhOSxjVO
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) April 29, 2021
Sunny Hostin, another co-host of “The View,” said that Scott was chosen to give the rebuttal speech because of his race.
“Why was he chosen to give this rebuttal? He was chosen because he is the only black Republican senator,” said Hostin.
“He is the person that Republicans want to put out front because of the problem of racism in this country and he knows that. So I was sort of disappointed that he was used in this way and didn’t take that opportunity to address that type of — this type of issue head-on,” she added.
During Scott’s speech Wednesday, the South Carolina senator said that Americans need to find common ground in discussions about race, and also shared a moving anecdote about his grandfather holding the newspaper at the kitchen table in the morning to set a good example for Scott — even though he had never learned to read himself.
Scott said that he himself knows the “pain of discrimination,” having been “pulled over for no reason” and “followed around a store.” He also added: “I’ve also experienced a different kind of intolerance. I get called ‘Uncle Tom’ and the N-word by progressives, by liberals. Just last week, a national newspaper suggested my family’s poverty was actually privilege because a relative owned land generations before my time.”
After Scott’s speech, the phrase “Uncle Tim” trended on Twitter, a combination of the names Tim Scott and “Uncle Tom,” a racial slur that has historically been used to accuse black men of being submissive to white men.
The South Carolina senator called out the responses to his speech during an appearance on “Fox & Friends” the next morning.
“It is stunning in 2021 that those who speak about ending discrimination want to end it by more discrimination,” Scott said.
“I’ll just tell you that it has been an amazing morning with so many good people calling. But the Left, they have doubled down. They are not going to attack my policies, but they are literally attacking the color of my skin. You cannot step out of your lane according to the liberal elite Left,” he said.