04/30/2015 04:27 pm ET Updated Apr 30, 2015

Journalist Juan Thompson Slams Erin Burnett's 'Contemptible' Use Of 'Thug'

CNN journalist Erin Burnett enraged many viewers when she suggested "thugs" was an appropriate word to describe rioters in Baltimore. In a conversation with HuffPost Live on Wednesday, Intercept journalist Juan Thompson echoed the criticisms levied against Burnett, saying he had "nothing but bottomless contempt" for her.

Thompson told host Josh Zepps that Burnett -- who, in a Tuesday interview with Baltimore City Councilman Carl Stokes, backed city Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and President Obama on their usage of the word "thug" -- was "practically pissed off that she couldn't call black people thugs."

In the CNN interview with Stokes, Burnett added that she hopes she would call her son a thug should he be involved in a similar, violent uprising. Thompson told HuffPost Live the comments were ignorant:

The point is [Burnett's] son will never be in the case where he has to fear being brutalized and attacked and murdered by Baltimore police. He will never be in the case where his spine will have been severed and his family will be without him for the rest of their lives. For her to sit there in that New York studio, in this elitist, sneering tone, to call black youth who are fighting for their lives and for justice "thugs" was contemptible.

The riots in Baltimore, which have grown violent, were sparked by the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old who died April 19 after he sustained severe spinal injuries while in police custody. The Department of Justice is now investigating Gray's death.

Sign up here for Live Today, HuffPost Live's new morning email that will let you know the newsmakers, celebrities and politicians joining us that day and give you the best clips from the day before!



Baltimore Protest April 29, 2015