ThinkProgress

NPR interviewed the racist behind ‘Unite the Right 2’ and it was a disaster

KESSLER AT LAST YEAR'S 'UNITE THE RIGHT' RALLY IN CHARLOTTESVILLE, VIRGINIA. (CREDIT: Shay Horse/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Two days ahead of what is expected to be a small white supremacist rally in Washington, D.C., NPR gave rally organizer Jason Kessler a national platform to peddle junk “race science.”

About five minutes into NPR’s interview with Kessler — who also organized last year’s Unite the Right white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., in which a counter-protester named Heather Heyer was murdered when a neo-Nazi drove a car into a crowd — host Noel King earnestly asked him, “Do you think that white people are smarter than black people?”

Kessler proceeded to rank the races by intelligence.

“There is enormous variation between individuals, but the IQ testing is pretty clear that it seems like Ashekenazi Jews rate the highest in intelligence, then Asians, then white people, then, uh, Hispanic people and black people. There’s enormous variation, but as a matter of science, IQ testing is pretty clear.”

Instead of pushing back on Kessler’s deeply unscientific claims, King replied by saying, “You don’t sound like someone who wants to unite people when you say something like that.” Kessler chuckled.

King served up a number of softball questions to Kessler throughout the interview, such as “what do you believe?” and “in what ways are white people in America underrepresented?”

Listen:

After the nearly 7-minute interview ended, NPR transitioned to an interview with a Black Lives Matter activist, a setup implying that white supremacists and people advocating for racial justice are two sides of the same coin.

King’s interview with Kessler occurred hours after NPR posted a tweet suggesting Heyer was murdered by a runaway self-driving car, and not a neo-Nazi who has been charged with hate crimes in connection with her death.

King didn’t mention Heyer’s name a single time during her interview with Kessler.