MSNBC host Joy Reid on Wednesday night said she should have been more “sensitive” two days earlier when she seemingly compared radicalized Trump supporters to “the way Muslims act,” remarks that sparked outrage among Muslim activists and organizations.
More specifically, it was a non-apology.
“For decades, America’s Muslim community has endured blanket portrayals that focus on one thing, not their families or individual achievements or even anything about Islam,” she said Wednesday. “Nope, just one thing: terrorism. Particularly after 9/11, profiling became a near American obsession for anybody Brown—god forbid with a beard or headscarf, whether they were Muslim or not, traveling through an airport could be hell. Physical attacks on not just Muslims, but Sikhs, who are not Muslim, increased.”
After noting how prevalent anti-Muslim stereotypes have been in media and entertainment, Reid then wondered aloud why there was a double standard when it came to describing extremism among white right-wingers compared to Muslim terrorism, taking aim at how the president has radicalized his base.
“It’s the misportrayal that is the problem,” she stated. “We’re all too quick to call out those who radicalize young men who are vulnerable. There have been treatments of this all over cable news for years. But when white Christians are radicalized, we don’t react the same way. When was the last time Donald Trump or anyone in his campaign was asked if they are willing to condemn the Boogaloo Boys by name?”
Touching on her own remarks, Reid was largely unapologetic, insisting that her comments were taken in bad faith and misconstrued.
“I asked that question on Monday, and there was a lot of conversation, particularly online after the segment aired, some of which was frankly not in good faith,” the ReidOut host declared. “But some of the conversation reflected the genuine feelings of people who have been subjected to the kind of stereotyping that I just described.”
“And who take matters like this to heart because of it,” she continued. “And we should all be sensitive to that, and I certainly should have been sensitive to that.”
She then turned to Newsweek editor-at-large Naveed Jamali, who was her guest during the Monday discussion, and said it was “not exactly the most artful way of asking that question, obviously, based on the reaction.”
“The way that I framed it obviously didn’t work,” she added.
Besides Jamali, Reid also brought on Dalia Mogahed, the director of research for The Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, to discuss whether Reid made a “fair analogy."
Mogahed, for her part, said that Reid has “always given Muslim voices a fair shake” before noting that while the MSNBC host “intended” to ask a fair question, the way “it landed” was “unintentionally saying that Muslims were inherently violent.”