H3H3’s Ethan Klein confronts JiDion for labeling him a “liberal racist”
H3H3’s Ethan Klein invited JiDion to his podcast to air their grievances after the latter called the former a “liberal racist” for his reaction to his video about “the most racist town in America”. Klein said while JiDion had “good intentions”, he was ill-equipped for the video. However, JiDion defended his stance.
H3H3 and JiDion have been going at it — slightly, at least — after Ethan Klein reacted to the JiDion’s viral video named “I went to the most racist town in America!”
The 21-minute video, which has more than 9 million views, showcases JiDion going around some of America’s most notorious towns for racism, namely Harrison and Zinc, Arkansas. He talked to minorities along the way, and also tried to break the stigma around these towns’ titles.
H3H3 was individually called out for being a “liberal racist” by JiDion after reacting to the video, which rubbed Klein the wrong way. So when the two confronted each other on H3H3’s podcast, they had to address the elephant in the room immediately.
“You accused me of — what I felt like was a light jab about ‘The Most Racist Town in America’ video you made — you called me a ‘liberal racist’,” Klein opened. “I am intrigued by that, I was just hoping you unpacked it a little more in your video so maybe you could do that for me.”
JiDion defended his stance though, saying that while conventional norms of racism are well known, ‘liberal racism’ is often brushed “under the rug”.
“I don’t think I called you a ‘liberal racist’ because personally I don’t think you’re a racist. I said ‘this was liberal racism’. I said the same thing about Hasan,” he said.
“What comes under the rug and people don’t talk about is liberal racism, and what I think [that] is… like white people thinking they know better than black people, thinking they have to save us. It’s more of like a white savior complex.”
JiDion said he felt patronized by H3H3’s reaction to the video, and while he doesn’t regret what he said, he “regrets how [he] phrased it”.
Klein pushed back at this explanation somewhat, saying JiDion was ill-equipped to handle some of the conversations he was getting himself involved with by touring around the towns.
“The criticism of that video was you went there and you’re like ‘we can talk with these people’,” he said. “You’re talking to that KKK guy who’s basically like ‘you can’t come to my church’ and he thinks whites and black people should be separated, so you kind of just gave him a platform to talk uncontested.
“We all see that the video had good intentions and we get what you’re trying to do out there. I’ve made this mistake before… when you talk to people that incendiary and that indefensible, lying and misleading sh*t, you have to be equipped to respond to it appropriately. You have to be prepared, else they’re left to say whatever they want kind of unchecked and in a way you let the guy give his platform up without challenging him in a way that would have been meaningful.”
JiDion did admit he didn’t exactly know what he was getting himself into, but he wanted to attempt to paint a balanced picture of these towns which he believes so often get mislabeled.
“When I got there, got talking to the minorities of the place, figuring out and learning that ‘it’s not actually the town of Harrison, it’s the little town of Zinc’. Then going over to Zinc and finding out it’s not even there, it’s literally just that compound and how everyone in that area doesn’t like them.
“Everyone was cussing them out and talking about how much they dislike them, and then I go on his property to talk to him, and me personally — if I was to go there, he talked, and I was like ‘you f**king racist, you’re wrong’ — it would have gotten a lot of clicks, but what it would have got done?”
However, from there the two made up and kept the conversation going respectfully for half an hour, discussing all manner of topics.