*it’s the face off we’ve been expecting.
Sunday morning Larry Wilmore and Al Sharpton went at it on MSNBC’s “Politics Nation” after the reverend spoke out against Wilmore’s n-word comment to President Obama at the White House Correspondents Dinner.
“Yo Barry,” he said with a chest bump at the end of his monologue, “you did it, my n*gga.”
The President grinned and chest bumped back — and the White House was soon defending Wilmore while others, including Sharpton, didn’t like it one bit.
Wilmore said he “wanted to make a statement more than a joke” about the historical implications of the end of the first black American presidency. He felt that it would mean something to take a word that’s been “used against us… and now to turn that around on its head.”
“There was something about summing up where we’ve gone that kind of spoke to me. And it’s hard when you’re talking about artistic choices what you would have done differently. Some people said, you could’ve said ‘my brother.’ Sure. I could’ve said that.”
Sharpton’s response was that no other minority group in the country does that and he doesn’t “want to see us take the power out of something that was structured to degrade us.” Sharpton also told Wilmore his use of the word was “inexcusable.”
“This is his last year and I didn’t want the last word, being called the N-word,” Sharpton said.
“That’s how I looked at it.”
But Wilmore didn’t back down, telling Sharpton: “I’m prepared to live with the consequences of it.”
READ RELATED STORY: Larry Wilmore: Shut Up! – N**ger * N**ga Are Two Different Things
Wilmore made the argument for using the n-word for satirical purposes, as opposed to never using it ever, and Sharpton asked him if he would do it again at the WHCD, given the blowback.
Wilmore said he felt it meant something to end Obama’s last dinner with it, while Sharpton said the very fact of it being Obama’s last was why he didn’t like it.
Fortunately the two found some common ground in a shared enemy — Donald Trump. Wilmore said he was horrified to see the political rise of the man who was himself the subject of a White House Correspondents’ roast a few years ago, back when he was still railing about President Obama’s birth certificate.
“This is a man who spent a lot of his time and capital on resources to try to illegitimize this black man in the Presidency,” Wilmore said.
“He spent so much time — and then America, a large portion of America turns out and embraces this man as the hope to save America. I find that highly offensive.”