On Friday's CNN Tonight, Don Lemon hosted a panel discussion of why most white women voted for Donald Trump that was stacked three to one against conservatives.
Liberal contributor Kirsten Powers argued that such women must be "racist" because they voted for Trump, while UC Berkeley Professor Stephanie Jones-Rogers argued that women have long benefited from "white supremacy" even while being "oppressed" by white men. Alice Stewart was the exception to the liberal rule.
At 11:27 p.m. Eastern, after Lemon began by asking Powers her view, she recalled: "People will say that they support him for reasons other than his racist language."
She soon added: "And they'll say, 'Well, I'm not racist. I just voted for him because I didn't like Hillary Clinton.'"
The CNN contributor insinuated that everyone who voted for Trump is racist as she continued: "And I just want to say that's not -- that doesn't make you not racist. It actually makes you racist. If you support somebody who does racist things, that makes you racist. So I just want to establish that."
She then asserted that white women are "oppressed" and lamented that they would not therefore support other "oppressed people." Powers:
I think we have to recognize that white men are doing it as well, but sometimes I think that we would hope that we would get better behavior from white women because white women are themselves are oppressed and that they would be able to align themselves with other oppressed people.
I think we have to remember that the white patriarchal system actually benefits white women in a lot of ways, and they are attached to white men who are benefiting from the system that was created by them, for them. And their fathers and their husbands and their brothers are benefiting from the system, and so they are also benefiting.
A couple of weeks ago, Powers notably commented that "white men are very violent and a problem."
Lemon soon turned to Professor Jones-Rogers and quoted her on women supporting "white supremacy." Lemon:
You're quoted in this Vox article as saying that, for centuries, white women have "invested in white supremacy because their whiteness affords them a particular kind of power that their gender does not." What did you mean by that?
As she responded, she made a similar claim as Powers about women benefiting from "white supremacy." Jones-Rogers:
We tend to think of white women primarily focusing on gender oppression -- that because they are oppressed as women, that that oppression will allow them to ally and to sympathize with other dispossessed and other disempowered peoples in the nation.
But my research actually shows that they long had deep investment in white supremacy, and not only did they benefit from it, but they participated in its construction and its perpetuation -- not just in the context of slavery, not just in the colonial period, but well after slavery was over.
Stewart strongly disagreed with the notion that she was oppressed and added "Let me just say this Kirsten is a dear friend of mine but I resent she says I'm racist because Donald Trump says racist things."