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Condoleezza Rice disputes the narrative that race relations are worse under Trump


'doesn't feel worse than when I grew up in Jim Crow Alabama'

Former United States Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. (Marla Aufmuth/Getty Images for Watermark Conference for Women)

Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state under President George W. Bush, said she doesn't think race relations are worse during President Donald Trump's administration than they have been in the past.

Rice was speaking with NBC News' Sheinelle Jones, who said some people "say it feels worse now when we're talking about race."

"It sure doesn't feel worse than when I grew up in Jim Crow Alabama," Rice responded. "So let's drop this notion that we're worse race relations today than we were in the past. Really? That means we've made no progress. Really? I think the hyperbole about how much worse it is isn't doing us any good. This country's never going to be colorblind. We had the initial original sin of slavery. It's still with us."

Rice also said that even the idea that President Trump's words have deteriorated race relations to a worse state than before is an exaggeration.

"Oh, come on, alright. I would be the first to say we need to watch our language about race," Rice conceded. "We need to watch that we don't use dog whistles to people. But when we start saying, 'Oh, you know, it's worse today,' no, they're not."

Rice knows quite a bit about difficult race relations. She was the first black female secretary of state, and she told a story during her NBC News interview about going to a school and having only three black girls in her class, after having previously attended a segregated school.

One day she said she showed up to school, and found that a student didn't want to sit beside her because she was black. She told her father about it, and his response stuck with her throughout her life.

"My father said, 'You know what? It's just fine if they don't want to sit next to you because you're black—as long as they move,'" Rice recalled.

(H/T Fox News)

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