When Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake called the mob running riot in the streets of her city “thugs,” most of America thought she was stating the obvious.
But even a progressive black woman Democrat can’t call a thug a “thug” without being called a racist these days – and that’s what happened to Rawlings-Blake when late-night bandleader Questlove got wind of her statement.
Here’s what Rawlings-Blake had to say Monday night on CNN.
There isn’t a normal person — black or white — who couldn’t understand what Rawlings-Blake was saying when she made clear the difference between “thugs” and protesters.
But here’s what Questlove posted on Twitter.
“Thugs” = Niggers #KnowTheCode
— Questlove Gomez (@questlove) April 28, 2015
Questlove is actually the Philadelphia-born Ahmir Khalib Thompson — and best known as the leader of The Roots, the house band for”The Late Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.”
Whatever the man’s musical ability — and it’s considerable — coming from the most racially obsessed city in the country has clearly clouded the drummer’s thinking when it comes to racial matters. When Rawlings-Blake called the rioters destroying her city “thugs,” he heard a code word for the foulest racial slur in American English.
(Unfortunately, this isn’t all that new for Questlove, since whining about racism seems to come to him as naturally as rhythm. But it’s still pretty outlandish.)
Sad to say, there were plenty on social media who agreed with Thompson. But other heard Rawlings-Blake differently. When she said “thug,” they thought she meant “thug” — as in criminal, as in savage, as in animals.
@questlove wait, what? Are the ones destroying shit not thugs?? Heard a couple older black folks use thug on this issue as well..nice try
— Denny the Bum (@DenMan321) April 28, 2015
@questlove what’s the correct word to use for this kind of behavior?
— ShawnfromNewJersey (@ShawnFichtner) April 28, 2015
— Lex (@alextaveira) April 28, 2015
@questlove So what should she have said?
— CSMP (@CSMP77) April 28, 2015
.@questlove “Thug” comes from “Thuggee” in India, which was an assassin’s cult. Later applied to any criminal. Try again, idiot.
— Bob Owens (@bob_owens) April 28, 2015
@TwitchyTeam How about Savages….? Animals..?? Terrorists…?? Criminals…??
— Secret Squirrel (@SecritSqrl) April 28, 2015
But this is the one that’s already pushing up the blood pressure in the NBC corporate suites.
@questlove finna piss off all those white Jimmy Fallon fans and i’m here for it!
— hanzo hasashi (@unkleju) April 28, 2015
Someone at NBC is having a very bad day today.
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