Roger Stone is once again a free man, but he's far from out of hot water following an interview on Saturday. The controversial Donald Trump associate and campaign adviser appeared on The Mo'Kelly Show with host Morris W. O'Kelly and dropped a racial slur in the middle of the conversation.
Discussing his release from prison after Trump commuted his sentence, Stone seemed to get frustrated with O'Kelly's comparison of his treatment to those who have been wronged by the justice system. "There are thousands of people treated unfairly daily, how your number just happened to come up in the lottery, I am guessing it was more than just luck, Roger, right?" the host asked Stone.
Wait... Did Roger Stone just say “I don’t feel like arguing with this negro...”?
Man...2020 is the wildest! pic.twitter.com/ssWy8RYYWT— michaelharriot (@michaelharriot) July 19, 2020
After some silence, Stone can be heard muttering to someone on his end of the conversation, "I don't feel like arguing with this negro." This prompts O'Kelly to ask Stone to repeat himself, leading to the controversial GOP ally to sigh and remain silent before pretending the call was disconnected.
When pressed on his words after returning, Stone immediately denied he used a slur and called O'Kelly crazy for suggesting it. The interview continued, according to the New York Times, with O'Kelly justifying it later on his program after Stone was gone. He noted that he continued the interview because his job is to keep Stone "talking for" the audience and himself.
"The only thing that I felt was true, honest and sincere that Roger Stone said was in that moment that he thought I was not listening," O'Kelly said to listeners. "All of my professional accolades, all my professional bona fides went out the window because as far as he was concerned, he was talking and arguing with a Negro."
As the New York Times points out, the term negro was once a common term when referring to Black people in the early 20th century through the Civil Rights Movement. It has since been defined as a slur and offensive, raising questions about Stone's use during the chat.
Hey everyone. I heard what I heard. The audio is the audio. I will address in Hour 2. We're blowing out the second half of the show.#RogerStone
I am nobody's NEGRO.— Mr. Mo'Kelly 🎙️ (@MrMokelly) July 19, 2020
Speaking with the outlet, O'Kelly said that Stone's use of the term was "clear, it was discernible and it was unmistakable." He also added that it was a disappointing realization to have in 2020.
"It's the diet version of the N-word, but as an African-American man, it's something I deal with pretty frequently," he told the Times. "If there's a takeaway from the conversation, it is that Roger Stone gave an unvarnished look into what is in the heart of many Americans today."
Stone was to report to prison in July to serve a 40-month sentence for seven felony charges of obstruction related to the congressional investigation of Trump's 2016 campaign and Russia's involvement. He was found guilty, but Trump commuted the sentence, raising questions about executive overreach.