Appearing as a guest on Monday's CNN Newsroom with Carol Costello to discuss Chris Rock's race-based monologue at the Oscars, after host Costello expressed that she "felt kind of sorry" for audience members who looked uncomfortable with the controversial jokes, liberal CNN political commentator Marc Lamont Hill provocatively referred to a "bunch of uncomfortable white people" in the audience as he recalled that he was gleeful at such a sight. Hill: "Their tears were my nectar. You know, watching a bunch of uncomfortable white people in a crowd (laughs) made me so happy."
At 9:24 a.m. ET, Costello brought up her own discomfort with the situation with Hill injecting that it was his "favorite part":
CAROL COSTELLO: Going back to Chris Rock for just a second, you know, as he was speaking and giving his monologue, Marc, they were showing reaction shots in the audience.
MARC LAMONT HILL, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: My favorite part.
COSTELLO: I know, and it, for me, you know, I felt kind of sorry for some of them-
HILL: Not me.
COSTELLO: -because it's so uncomfortable. I know. I'm just throwing the other side at you.
Hill, a Morehouse College professor, began his response:
Their tears were my nectar. You know, watching a bunch of uncomfortable white people in a crowd (laughs) made me so happy. Look, that's part of the conversation. If you're going to have a conversation about race, you're going to be uncomfortable sometimes. Chris Rock was pointing out some very profound truths about the Oscars, and about race and racism in America. And, yes, that's going to make some people uncomfortable.
He then added:
There were some people who didn't know whether to clap or laugh or do whatever. Like when he was talking about grandmamma hanging from the tree, they didn't know exactly how to react. I thought that was incredibly awesome. It was like when Kendrick Lamar performed at the Grammies, and some people didn't know exactly what to do. I thought that was amazing, and I think that could be the type of discomfort that moves us into a new place as a nation. Not just discomfort, but discomfort combined with action.