Whoopi Goldberg told co-hosts and audience members of ABC talk show "The View" that she thinks President Donald Trump needs to "grow a pair" after White House press secretary Sean Spicer made comments to a black female reporter that have been called racist and sexist (video below).
The March 29 episode of the daytime talk show featured a segment with the hosts watching and discussing a clip from the previous day's press briefing from Spicer. In the clip, Spicer was asked how the White House plans to improve its image after all the allegations of Russian ties.
Spicer was defensive in response to the question posed by April Ryan, a correspondent for American Urban Radio.
"If the president puts Russian salad dressing on a salad tonight, somehow that's a Russian connection," he told Ryan.
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Ryan tried to push the question, but Spicer spent more time criticizing the question and reporter than he did answering either.
"You're shaking your head," Spicer told Ryan. "At some point, April, you're going to have to take 'no' for an answer with respect to whether or not there was collusion." Investigations into possible Russian election interference remain ongoing.
"Stop shaking your head," Spicer said once again at the end of the clip shown on "The View."
Goldberg's immediate reaction was to call out what she perceived as racist undertones in the exchange between Spicer and Ryan.
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"Get in here Kizzy!" Goldberg shouted, referring to Kizzy Kinte, a character from the 1977 television miniseries about black people in the U.S., "Roots."
"Would he have said that to a man?" host Sunny Hostin wondered. "Would he have said to a man, 'Stop shaking your head?'"
"Stop bullying the journalists," host Joy Behar said of the exchange.
The ladies of "The View" all seemed to agree that Spicer's actions were less than professional and possibly both sexist and racist, but when the conversation made its way to the topic of the president and his responsibility to communicate with the public, Goldberg had a lot to say.
Can I point something out to you in terms of thin skin because this new guy [Trump] does not appear to have any skin ... You know what he said about [former President Barack] Obama? "People have birth certificates, he doesn't have a birth certificate, he may have one but there is something on that, maybe religion maybe it says he's a Muslim."
On [former President] Bill Clinton, he said "Bill Clinton was the worst abuser of women to ever sit in the oval office. He was a predator."
On [former President] George W. Bush he said "I think he was a disaster and I think the Iraq war was one of the worst decisions ever made."
So if you can dish it, you have to be able to take it. That's the job ... Grow a pair. It's part of the job.
Former Secretary of State and Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton also publicly criticized Spicer's behavior toward Ryan in a speech given the night of March 28, according to Business Insider.
"Just look at all that's happened in the last few days to women who were simply doing their jobs," Clinton said. "April Ryan, a respected journalist with unrivaled integrity, was doing her job just this afternoon in the White House press room, and she was patronized and cut off trying to ask a question."
Ryan told CNN that she wouldn't be deterred from doing her job, saying she will keep asking legitimate questions and pressing for legitimate answers.
"I'm going back today to do my job and he's going to do his job and I take it for what it is," Ryan said. "And as an administration is calling us the enemy of the people, I guess we saw some of that thought process yesterday."
Sources: The View/YouTube, Business Insider via Yahoo, CNN/Twitter / Photo credit: Daniel Langer and Comic Relief, Inc/Wikimedia Commons