As rioters in Baltimore took to the streets this week, countless media organizations casually referred to the predominantly black protesters as “thugs.” Then, to the surprise of many reporters and anchors, black interviewees disputed this characterization and responded that you might as well call the protesters “niggers.”
On CNN, Erin Burnett referenced how President Barack Obama and Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake both used the term “thug” to describe the rioters, and how plenty of voices on social media had objected to the characterization.
Burnett asked her guest, Baltimore City Councilman Carl Stokes, whether “thug” was an appropriate term by which to define the predominantly young and black rioters. Stokes vehemently disagreed. “No. Of course it is not the right word to call our children thugs. These are the children who have been set aside, marginalized, who have not been engaged by us. No. We don’t have to call them thugs,” said Stokes.
Read the entire article on The Daily Beast: here.