It’s the sort of comments that’ll make your jaw drop or at least wonder “What the hell has gotten into him?”

While addressing the Dallas shooting which resulted in the death of 5 police officers and left several others injured, Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich made some pertinent comments on race in America.

No, the Republican didn’t call Black Lives Matter a terrorist group or say that Alton Sterling and Philando Castile “deserved it.” Instead, Gingrich said that the experiences of black Americans are impossible to understand if you are a normal white American in modern society.

Is that a conversation about privilege I hear from a REPUBLICAN? It can’t be!

“It is more dangerous to be black on America. It’s both more dangerous because of the crime, which is the Chicago story. But it is more dangerous in that [you are] substantially more likely to be in a situation where police don’t respect you and where you could easily get killed. And I think sometimes, for whites, it’s difficult to appreciate how real that is. It’s an everyday danger.”

This is just unbelievable coming from the mouth of an establishment Republican, but there it is!

“It took me a long time, and a number of people talking to me through the years to get a sense of this. If you are a normal white American, the truth is you don’t understand being black in America, and you instinctively under-estimate the level of discrimination and the level of additional risk.”

The cynic in me says that Gingrich is trying to make himself more palatable as a Trump VP running-mate, but the hopeful optimist in me wonders if in this tiny way, conservatives are starting to finally get it.


Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at