Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss.,  called Clarence Thomas, the only African-American judge on the Supreme Court, an Uncle Tom during a webcast Sunday with the New Nation of Islam. His remarks were first reported by BuzzFeed.

Check out the video below:

In an interview with CNN Chief Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash, Rep.  Thompson defended his statements:

Bash: When you said Clarence Thomas was an “Uncle Tom,” what did you mean by that?

Thompson: “Well if you look at his decisions on the court, they have been adverse to the minority community, and the people I represent have a real issue with an African American not being sensible to those issues.”

Bash: Isn’t that a racially charged term?

Thompson: “For some it is, but to others it’s the truth.”

Bash: Because looking at that and hearing that kind of language, that certainly wouldn’t be appropriate if it was coming from somebody who was white.

Thompson: “But I’m black.”

Bash: That makes it OK?

Thompson: “I mean, you’re asking me the question, and I’m giving you a response. The people that I represent, for the most part, have a real issue with those decisions–voter ID, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act–all those issues are very important and for someone in the court who’s African American and not sensitive to that is a real problem.”

Bash: The other thing you were talking about is the fact that you believe some of the opposition, maybe even much of the opposition, to the president is because of the color of his skin.

Thompson: “Well, I’ve been here a long time. I’ve seen a lot of issues come before Congress. I’ve never seen the venom put forth on another candidate or a president like I’ve seen with this president and that’s my opinion.”

Bash: Are there specific things that people have said that are racially tinged that make you say that, or are you reading the tea leaves of what’s going on?

Thompson: “I’ve seen quite a few State of the Union messages, I’ve never heard a president called a liar in a State of the Union message.”

Bash: You think Congressman Joe Wilson was race based?

Thompson: “Well, I’ve never heard it before, it was a stupid decision…statement, but it has no real bearing.”

Bash: last question, just broadly…Where do you think the Republican Party is right now on issues of race? You have younger people who are trying to reach out to the African American community. Do you see things changing?

Thompson: “You always see a change when you see the policies change, when you see programs that have been beneficial to the survival to African Americans in this country being cut, whether it’s Head Start, nutrition programs, educational programs, job training programs. It’s hard to demonstrate that you care about people when the programs that they hold closest to their survival are being put on the chopping block.”

Bash: Were Mitch McConnell’s comments were racist?

Thompson: “It had nothing to with that. The comments are insensitive. To say to a president that you’re going to oppose anything that he puts out there is just totally…”

Bash: You think it was race based?

Thompson: “Well I’ve never heard him say it to any other president.”

But since when is a Black person calling another Black person an Uncle Tom a race issue? I swear.  Also, when was the last time you heard a white person call a Black person an Uncle Tom? Typically they prefer to use the “n” word. 




  1. Mary Burrell

    La,rry Elder and Lee Peterson are major Uncle Toms.

  2. Whitneys Receipts

    Why do white people always have to insert themselves in conversations like this? This has nothing to do with white people. This is about a man who sits on the highest court in the land and makes harmful decisions regarding the plight of black Americans. He makes decisions against advancements made (which he benefitted from) to level the playing field for minorities.

  3. David Jones

    As black people we do a disservice to Uncle Tom and our children when we repeat the historical lies about our ancestors given to us by our enemies. Know your history–Tom was a strong black man who stood up for black people..Sambo was the sellout black man who should be used when referring to people like Thomas and others. The term should be Uncle Sambo…not Uncle Tom to respect the legacy of this great man and to prevent white folks who know the truth from laughing at us.

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