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UPDATED Thursday, April 30, 2015, 3:41 p.m. ET: 

After going toe-to-toe with CNN‘s Wolf Blitzer earlier this week, activist Deray McKesson came on the Rickey Smiley Morning Show (broadcast by Radio One, also the parent company of NewsOne) to expound on the exchange.

“We don’t call it a riot, I call this an uprising,” he said of recent events in Baltimore, also observing that “America has criminalized blackness….To be a black man is to be a gun, and to be a black woman is to be erased.”
He invited a nuanced understanding of protest:
Protest is confrontation and destruction, but it is also community building. People are coming out in ways that are building a new political reality. I think about all the people who I didn’t know at all who I trusted with my life because we knew each other’s hearts in earnest [during protests]. We didn’t know each other’s names, we didn’t know each other’s stories, but we knew that we were all staying on the right side of justice.
Hear what else McKesson said in the audio clip below. 

Tuesday saw a number of interviews gone “real,” particularly for CNN hosts currently covering the recent uprising in Baltimore sparked from yet another incident of police violence.

And in an interview with activist DeRay McKesson, known for his efforts in Ferguson, Mo. after Michael Brown’s death, Wolf Blitzer got more than he bargained for when he tried (and failed) to get McKesson to condemn protesters in Baltimore.

After pointing out that 15 officers were injured in Monday’s clashes, 200 people were arrested and a number of vehicles and buildings set ablaze, Blitzer asks McKesson if there’s any “excuse for that kind of violence.”

McKesson’s response is near perfect.

“Yeah, and there’s no excuse for the seven people the Baltimore City Police Department has killed in the past year either, right?”

Blitzer continues, citing the “not violent protests in the tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King.”

“We’re not making comparisons,” Blitzer said. “Obviously, we don’t want anybody hurt. But I just want to hear you say that there should be peaceful protests.”

“Yeah, there should be peaceful protests. And I don’t have to condone it to understand it, right? The pain that people feel is real,” McKesson replied. “And you are making a comparison. You are suggesting this idea that broken windows are worse than broken spines, right?”

Well, there you have it. Maybe next time Blitzer won’t try to coax his guests into spewing whatever he wants to hear.

Silly man.

For more information on the Freddie Gray protests and uprisings in Baltimore, visit NewsOne’s hub, here.


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