Before the Women’s March organizes for an upcoming demonstration, co-presidents Tamika Mallory and Bob Bland stopped by The View. While on the show, Mallory faced tough criticism for associating with Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan, who she called “the GOAT” in an Instagram post.
On the show, Sunny Hostin asked why Mallory called Farrakhan the “greatest of all time,” when he has been called anti-Semitic and has referred to Jews as termites.
“I didn’t call him the greatest of all time because of his rhetoric,” Mallory responded. “I called him the greatest of all time because of what he’s done in Black communities.”
Last February, Mallory, along with other Women’s March founders, attended the Nation of Islam’s Saviours’ Day event. During Farrakhan’s speech, he said Jewish people are “responsible for all of this filth and degenerate behavior that Hollywood is putting out turning men into women and women into men.”
When she was asked why she attended the event of such a controversial figure, Mallory said her call to activism takes her where the people go.
“As a leader, as a Black leader in a country that is still dealing with some very serious unresolved issues as it relates to the Black experience in this country, I go into a lot of difficult spaces,” Mallory said. “Wherever my people are, there that’s where I must also be.”
Co-host Meghan McCain was clearly not satisfied with Mallory’s answers and began directly questioning Mallory’s intentions.
“I would never be comfortable supporting someone who said, ‘I’m not an anti-Semite, I’m an anti-termite,’ ‘It’s the wicked Jews, the false Jews that are promoting lesbianism, homosexuality,’” McCain said quoting Farrakhan. “You’re talking about women, you should be talking about all women, including Jewish women and conservative women."
McCain then pressed Mallory to say she condemns Farrakhan’s message.
“We didn’t make those remarks,” Mallory said. “I don’t agree with many of Minister Farrakhan’s statements.”
McCain responded, “Do you condemn them?”
“I don’t agree with these statements,” Mallory responded. “It’s not my language, it’s not the way that I speak, it’s not how I organize. I should never be judged through the lens of a man.”
Before Mallory and Bland could speak further about the march, the segment ran out of time. The controversial ties with Farrakhan have resulted in a loss of sponsorship from the Democratic National Convention and the Southern Poverty Law Center.
“The DNC stands in solidarity with all those fighting for women’s rights and holding the Trump Administration and Republican lawmakers across the country accountable,” Sabrina Singh, the DNC’s deputy communications director, told the Daily Beast. “Women are on the front lines of fighting back against this administration and are the core of our Democratic Party.”