Could it happen?
“Well I mean, you always look for common ground,” Hill told me on today’s episode of the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“At least based off of what I read, the President enjoys a good steak and so do I. I just don’t put ketchup on mine because I’m not a heathen. And so, I would say a nice steak would be a good starting place to finding common ground.”
While on Heavy Live With Scoop B, Jemele Hill promoted the second season of her Jemele Hill is Unbothered Podcast, which is exclusively found on Spotify. The former ESPN columnist and SportsCenter host has had everyone on her show ranging from sports, politics and culture realm ranging from Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, to actress Gabrielle Union, NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley and Chelsea Clinton on her program.
Hill’s relationship or lackthereof with President Trump has been well documented. On September 11, 2017, Hill kept it real when she called President Trump a “white supremacist” via Twitter.
Former White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called Hill’s thoughts “a fireable offense by ESPN” and Trump himself addressed Hill’s comments and shared that he thought that Hill, a recipient of the National Association of Black Journalists journalist of the year award in 2018, owed him an apology. “My comments on Twitter expressed my personal beliefs,” she said.
“My regret is that my comments and the public way I made them painted ESPN in an unfair light. My respect for the company and my colleagues remains unconditional.”
Fast forward to 2020: If Jemele Hill ruled the world, what would a dinner with President Trump look like conversationally?
“President Trump is choosing the sides that he has chosen,” Hill told me on Heavy Live With Scoop B.
“Not because of ignorance on his part; it’s not that he doesn’t know better, he just doesn’t care. And those are the toughest conversations to have with people is that people who have no interest in moving in where they believe 10 percent; see, I can… even though on the face of it and certainly what I know about his philosophies in politics, we have nothing in common, right? But I guarantee you I’m much more capable of moving 10 percent to his side than he is to mine. And my thing of which I would demand of him as a leader is one, is asking him why isn’t he interested in governing everybody? And that’s just a root question. You’re the President of the United States. Not the President of the Republicans, you’re not the President of the White people and you’re not the President of the White man. So why are you not interested in governing the rest of us who also pay taxes into this system, so we have to start there. I would love to get to the root of why he feels it’s necessary to divide our country by running on the ticket of White Supremacy; because that’s what he’s running on: White fear and white supremacy. That’s what’s on the ballot for him. And for someone that’s been privileged his whole life, it’s really quite insulting to many of us that he would ever position a campaign that America Needs to be Made Great Again as if it wasn’t great for him his whole life. I mean, he started off as a millionaire for crying out loud and there are levels of suffering that he has never EVER worried about. His basic needs have always been met and that he’s not allowed to have his own experiences as a person; but it is to say at the very least, the one thing that he never had to worry about is where his next meal is coming from. But that is not the case of the people that he governs and so, I think that his lack of empathy is an issue. Really my biggest problems with him outside of policy is his character and he doesn’t seem to possess very much of it and your integrity and your ability to have empathy is everything and I would just wonder why he doesn’t seem to have any. To tell people that in a country where 200,000 people have died from a disease, to have so little empathy for the victims and to have to be unable to understand how his incompetency has created much of this chaos is really quite startling.”
That’s a lot to digest over a steak dinner minus the ketchup condiment.
So now what? “I don’t know how much of a fruitful conversation that would be,” asserts Jemele Hill.
“Because, Donald Trump is in his 70’s and is very entrenched in his ways and quite frankly, there’s nothing about his life that has led anybody to believe that he is interested in anything other than what benefits him. And as I said, those are the toughest conversations to have about things. Maybe we should talk sports. That might be better.”