Fox News host Bob Beckel went after former NBA star Charles Barkley for criticizing the Ferguson protesters, questioning the wealthy sports broadcaster’s qualifications for “talking black” — before admitting he though Barkley was right.
Following the decision not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson last week for the killing of Michael Brown, the NBA legend defended Wilson’s actions, argued for more respect from blacks toward police, and called the violent protesters in the St. Louis area “scumbags.”
“Let me say something about Charles Barkley: He has not seen a poor neighborhood in 20 years!” Beckel said Monday. “He’s running as a Republican for the Senate. He’s putting in nose he knows nothing about what he’s talking about.”
Co-host Greg Gutfeld noted that Barkley — who briefly considered a run for governor of Alabama as a Republican in 1995 – has been a vocal supporter of President Obama. “He’s all over the place politically, which is why you’ve got to trust him,” he said.
But Beckel admitted he thought Barkley was more or less right on substance: “I thought his message was good, by the way,” Beckel said. “I just think other people than Charles Barkley should say it. . . . There’s something about Charles Barkley, every time I see him talking about this stuff, starting [to] talk black, that bothers me.”