simmons tmz

*Russell Simmons has responded to Geraldo Rivera.

During a “HuffPost Live” interview Tuesday, the Fox News correspondent blamed hip hop for keeping “black and brown people” under the thumb of racism.

“Hip-hop has done more damage to black and brown people than racism in the last 10 years,” Rivera said before naming Simmons directly. “I love Russell Simmons, he’s a dear friend of mine. I admire his business acumen. At some point, those guys have to cop to the fact that by encouraging this distinctive culture that is removed from the mainstream, they have encouraged people to be so different from the mainstream that they can’t participate other than, you know, the racks in the garment center and those entry-level jobs. And I lament it. I really do. I think that it has been very destructive culturally.”

Well, TMZ ambushed Simmons to get his reaction.

“He lost on ‘Apprentice.’ I can’t respect that,” he said, starting off. Among other things, he called Rivera “not relevant.”

Watch below…