A debate on race relations and policing between Dan Bongino and Geraldo Rivera got so heated Wednesday night that it culminated in the latter screaming, “You son of a b——! You’re nothing but a punk!”
At issue for the two Fox contributors was the death of Daunte Wright, whether systemic racism was at play, and the split-second decisions cops must often make that can mean life or death.
“I am perhaps the most deeply experienced reporter in television history,” Mr. Rivera proclaimed in defense of his commentary. “I have done hundreds of stories over thousands of hours with cops.”
Mr. Bongino, a former Secret Service agent, noted the stark contrast between reporting on shootings and being an officer who must determine when to use lethal force.
“There’s a big difference between reporting on a baseball game and playing it, Geraldo. You’ve never worn a badge, period,” the “Dan Bongino Show” podcast host said. “You brought the race card into it the other night when we had this debate, despite having no facts to back that up.”
The segment came against a cultural backdrop in which protests have spread since Mr. Wright’s death Sunday night in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.
Officer Kim Potter, who has since resigned, has been charged with second-degree manslaughter in her attempt to subdue him after a traffic stop.
Ms. Potter has said she killed Mr. Wright by accident when she reached for her Taser but grabbed her handgun by mistake — a claim that doesn’t mollify critics of police use of force.
“Blacks are twice as likely to be shot by cops as Whites,” Mr. Rivera added. “How about that fact?”
The men then spoke over each other until “Hannity” host Sean Hannity asserted control over the panel.
“He’s injecting race into the argument because he has nothing else,” Mr. Bongino said. “All you want to do is see the country burn.”
“I want to see the country burn?!” Mr. Rivera snapped. “You son of a b——! I want to see the country burn, you punk? You’re nothing but a punk!”
Court documents reveal that Mr. Wright had an open warrant for an alleged Dec. 1, 2019, attack on a female acquaintance, which included a brandished handgun, when he was pulled over on Sunday.
Warning: Strong Language.