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The Roots Stood Up To Donald Trump When Jimmy Fallon Wouldn’t

The Roots Donald Trump

Jimmy Fallon had potential presidential hairpiece Donald Trump as a guest on The Tonight Show last night (September 15). People don’t exactly go to Jimmy Fallon for biting social satire, but this interview, which ended with Fallon ruffling Trump’s hair, was another level of innocuous and toothless.

Normalizing the kind of person who preaches flat out racist and sexist bigotry is a dangerous thing to do, and Fallon lost respect from a lot of people for not grilling him on any sort of issue. My second thought before even watching this interview was how Fallon’s house band The Roots must have felt; an all-Black band having to sit back and smile as Fallon and Trump dance around the issues. But as Think Progress pointed out earlier today, The Roots already had a response in the chamber. As Trump walked out, the group played a very particular part of Erykah Badu‘s “20 Feet Tall:” “Then you, you built a wall/ A 20-foot wall / So I couldn’t see.” They lit up Michelle Bachman the same way in 2011 by playing Fishbone’s “Lyin’ Ass Bitch” as she walked on.

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Fallon deserves the hell he’s catching for serving as “hell’s court jester,” but leave it up to The Roots to at least kick a little mud in Trump’s eye before he sits down. Lead spitter Black Thought is one of the most politically-minded rappers in the game today, so there was now way Trump would slip by without at least a jab. It isn’t exactly a collapsing stage, but it’s something.

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