The context of the "Meet the Press" discussion was ostensibly about Ferguson, Missouri, and the circumstances that helped create the heightened conditions. But as Anna Brand noted
, Rudy Giuliani took the discussion in a curious direction.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani on Sunday stunned audiences when he explained how he is "disappointed" that the focus in Ferguson, Missouri, is on the majority of the police force being white, rather than violence between African-Americans. The conversation erupted when "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd began discussing the disproportion of white police forces to the communities they serve in areas across the U.S. aside from Ferguson, including Newark, New Jersey and El Paso, Texas. "All of those places could become future Fergusons," Todd said.
Giuliani had his own concerns, largely ignoring the importance of local law enforcement helping reflect the diversity of the communities they serve. "[T]he fact is, I find it very disappointing that you are not discussing the fact that 93 percent of blacks in America are killed by other blacks," the former Republican mayor said. "We're talking about the exception here [in Ferguson]."
Georgetown's Michael Eric Dyson tried to set the record straight: "First of all, most black people who commit crimes against black people go to jail. Number two, they are not sworn by the police department as an agent of the state to uphold the law. So in both cases, that's a false equivalency that the mayor has drawn which has exacerbated tensions that are deeply embedded in American culture."
The back and forth continued, with Giuliani eventually concluding, "The white police officers won't be there if you weren't killing each other, 70 to 75 percent of the time." Dyson cited the sentiment as an example of "a defensive mechanism of white supremacy at work" in Giuliani's mind.
At which point Chuck Todd intervened and changed the direction of the conversation.
Of course, Giuliani wasn't quite done.
The former mayor appeared
on Fox News this morning to say the biggest danger to a black child is "another black," not a white police officer.
"Here's what I'm very frustrated about with Ferguson, and all these situations," he told "Fox and Friends" co-host Steve Doocy. "These things happen and they are exceptions." "The danger to a black child in America is not a white police officer. That's going to happen less than one percent of the time," he later added. "The danger to a black child -- if it was my child -- the danger is another black." Giuliani went on to suggest that Ferguson protestors ("these people") should spend more time "trying to straighten out" crime in the black community. "I used to look at our crime reduction, and the reason we reduced homicide by 65 percent is because we reduced it in the black community," Giuliani said of his time as mayor. "Because there is virtually no homicide in the white community."
Here's the video from "Meet the Press":