Rev. Al Sharpton shared his thoughts on Fox’s recent firing of Bill O’Reilly Wednesday night with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes. Sharpton said during O’Reilly’s 20-year tenure with the company he “certainly promoted” white nationalism.
“He became the spokesman for the right-wing ad this whole, kind of, going back to the pre-civil rights days,” Sharpton said.
Fox News cut ties with O’Reilly Wednesday after a New York Times report detailed a series of sexual harassment allegations against the now-former “O’Reilly Factor” host that resulted in dozens of advertisers distancing themselves from the show.
O’Reilly and Sharpton have had several high-profile disagreements in the past. Hayes played a series clips in which the former Fox News star said racially sensitive things.
“For this kind of language to be going on, day after day, and to become commercially successful was very, very troubling if not frightening to many of us in the African-American community,” Sharpton said in response to the video montage.
When asked about O’Reilly referring to him as a “race hustler,” Sharpton replied:
“I think he certainly promoted a very clear and in no way nuanced white nationalism.”
Hayes went on to mention that O’Reilly and President Trump are friends who “share a similar world view” because they both came to power in New York.
“We get called the hustlers. We get called the names. We get called all kinds of non-complimentary terms for fighting against people who say they are trying to preserve something based on their race and based on their privilege,” Sharpton said.