W Kamau Bell tells Stephen Colbert America was built on 'White supremacy, racism, genocide and slavery'
Emmy Award-winning comedian W Kamau Bell was the guest on the June 16 episode of 'The Late Show With Stephen Colbert' and spoke on wide-ranging topics that included: how America was built on racism, the difference between White supremacy and a White supremacist and how he doesn't shy away from important conversations about race with his children. With a little shady sarcasm and hilarity, the short interview had some valid points when it comes to politics that has become so deeply rooted in conversations about race and police brutality.
Bell, who lives in California, is set for discussions that matter in Season 6 of his documentary series 'United Shades of America'. Calling the state "Florida Junior," referring to the escalating Covid-19 cases in Florida, Bell said, "Maybe this is the year before the apocalypse. We're maybe in a pre-apocalyptic moment." The comedian is a father of three children, aged 2, 5, and 9. When asked about the schools possibly opening up and how parents are dealing with that anxiety, Bell frankly stated, "We should have re-conceived how schools work."
Colbert asked his guest if his children watch the news, especially with everything that's going on now -- the protests, the upcoming election, and the pandemic. Bell revealed that if put in competition with another 9-year-old, his child would beat the opponent when it comes to knowing facts about President Trump. The proud father revealed that while playing on a tire swing, his eldest child asked him to explain "exactly what happened with George Floyd and police brutality." "I would rather me and my wife have this conversation," said Bell, who added it's better than having it being sprung on his child from someone else.
Host Colbert is practically known for his sarcasm, especially in his monologues at the beginning of his show, and hence most expect that with his guests as well. "How did you know the US would have racial issues," Colbert asked Bell who craftily replied that he has history books that he actually reads. "The US was founded on White supremacy and racism," said Bell explaining that until the system is re-designed, "this is where we are at." Bell's first episode of Season 6 of 'United Shades of America' is titled 'Where Do We Even Start With White Supremacy,' and will also showcase his mother as a guest. Bell joked that his mother is only on the show because his father was in Season 3, but was serious when he explained that she is an expert on racism. "She made sure I knew that I was Black and what that meant in the world," said Bell.
The comedian explained that we as people need to accept the fact that America was "built on genocide and slavery" and that everything else was built on top of that to ensure that the people responsible for it could benefit from it. Bell also further spoke of how there is a difference between White supremacy and a White supremacist. He used a Nazi as an example of a White supremacist and said that the fact that "44 out of 45 Presidents have been White men is what White supremacy is."
Bell says that racism isn't just about feelings, that it has "power" behind it. You can watch Bell explaining the definition of racism here.
'The Late Show With Stephen Colbert' airs weekdays on CBS.