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April 18th, 2012
01:28 PM ET

Clips From Last Night: Cornel West and Tavis Smiley on Ted Nugent's "off the wall" comments and the Trayvon Martin shooting

Piers Morgan talked with the hosts of Public Radio International's "Smiley & West" Tavis Smiley and Cornel West last night. West and Smiley are currently traveling the country on a "Poverty Manifesto Tour" but took some time to talk with Piers about the current election and the Trayvon Martin shooting.

Smiley remembers a year or two ago when he told the media the 2012 race for the white house was "going to be the nastiest, the most divisive, the ugliest, the most expensive and the most racist campaign for the white house we've ever seen." He said his predictions have come true during the current election cycle.

Recently Ted Nugent spoke out against the president saying "If Barack Obama becomes the president in November again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year." Smiley responded quite negatively to Nugent's comments.

"Every time Ted Nugent opens up his mouth, he says something that's absolutely off the wall," Smiley said. "And the fact that we give these kinds of nasty, vicious, vitriolic comments this kind of national attention bothers me. But it underscores yet again how ugly, how racist, and how divisive this campaign is going to be."

Piers also asked the duo to weigh in on the Trayvon Martin case and guns in America.

The "Trayvon Martin case is the peak of an iceberg of arbitrary power especially decisions of police departments that don't put enough value on the lives of poor black boys," West said. "Especially poor children across the board but especially poor black brothers."

Smiley said the Trayvon Martin shooting "is not an aberration. These kinds of cases happen all the time. This one made national news but there are far too many of America's children of all races, all colors and all creeds, who end up being the victims of gun violence. And this country does not have the courage, the conviction, or the commitment to go get these guns."

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soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. Gina Mendoza

    I enjoyed Piers on Celebrity Apprentice, never watched him on the X Factor. I've been watching his show, haphazardly, on CNN. I don't care for the way he cuts people off after he's asked them a question. He does it repeatedly. I've noticed that he does it more often to non-celebrities. It's quite annoying. I wish he'd stop.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Maxie Smith

      I think Piers ask insightful questions and is respectful of his guest for the most part. He is still in the learning phase of his talk show but from what I have seen so far he has the potential for becoming a respected and unique host. He doesn't always cut people off, I don't think you watch the show enough. You have to also consider this it's television, which does runs on a time schedule. If the show is covering controversial topics it is something he may have done to stay within a scheduled time frame. It is difficult to cover every detail or let everyone have equal say when everyone is anxious to give their opinion.

      April 18, 2012 at 6:01 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. RVA

    Why did Pierce ask these two guys about recent comments from Louis Farrakkan? They were way worse than Nugents and they were directed at Obama.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. CURTIS FLOOD

    The comment of nugent, shows his ignorance.., I say this because I am aware of the power behind OBAMA, I am also aware of the history america owns. The fact that there's a black face in the white house does not mean OBAMA is running things, and it certainly does not mean america is at it's worst because of him. This comment of nugent is against those who are really in control.., but his ignorance is towards OBAMA.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Maxie Smith

    Well I don't know what or if they have other motivations behind their Poverty Manifesto Tour but they seem to have good intentions.
    Their opinions on Ted Nugent are just that, opinions, but I think they were spot-on, that is a "scary" dude. Ted also has opinions, which are just that and if anybody puts any credence to Ted's opinion might consider taking an IQ test.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. liz

    Again, had to shut Morgan off, he let these jive ass brothers ramble on after tossing them softballs. The question he started to ask was what about all the black on black murder - like in Chicago, like about half the murders in the country from 13% of the people, like 93% of the murders are black on black (and add that blacks also commit some 45% of all crime against whites while whites do about 3% against blacks) ... well, the brothers would not want to talk about that, they want to talk about the police who are actually protecting us from this violence and mayhem and chaos and all the other words this jive ass duo put in the wrong wrong wrong place ... and add another wrong and wrong for the BROTHERS, Brother Piers.

    April 18, 2012 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. david russial

    The Motor City Moron should get thirty days in jail for being a big mouth and an idiot. All the decibels must have scrambled his brain. Who cares what he says anyway? He's a has been/never was.

    April 18, 2012 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Keith

    This is the perfect example of why we NEED strict gun control, here is a raving lunatic who can buy unlimited firepower at his local Walmart.
    Ignorance, stupidity and insanity do not mix well with guns.

    April 18, 2012 at 6:23 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Madeline

    After watching quite a few shows, I am disturbed by Pier's obvious liberal bent when questioning most guests. I think an interviewer should be neutral. Some of your questions are obviously meant to advance your political position. Larry King may have only tossed "soft ball" questions at his liberal guests, but he didn't try to ambush those he disagreed with! I can't say the same for you, Piers. Your biased interviews are enough to put off your independent and definitely conservative viewers. Good-by.

    April 19, 2012 at 12:29 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mary

      Well said Madeline. Sometimes it just puts you off listening to Morgan attacking people who think differently to him. He should be neutral as any good interviewer aught to be. Larry King was great and polite, never making anybody feel unconfortable and we were able to listen to other peoples opinions.

      April 19, 2012 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. blogasap

    I think the presidential cannonades should split the first twelve months. Who ever dose the best can finish the next 3years.

    April 23, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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