Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Fast Forward

CNN Contributor Under Fire After Farrakhan Ties Emerge

A major Jewish organization is calling for the firing of CNN contributor and Temple University professor Marc Lamont Hill after it emerged that he had ties to Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who has been criticized for his anti-Semitism for decades.

The ties first came to light after the entertainment website The Wrap reported on Friday that a photograph of Hill and Farrakhan smiling together was featured on a website promoting the minister’s album, which also features Stevie Wonder, Common and Snoop Dogg.

Hill told The Wrap that the image was taken at an album listening party in 2016. He said that he didn’t approve of his image being used to promote the album. But he added that while he condemned Farrakhan’s most recent anti-Semitic statement, in which the leader compared Jews to termites, Hill didn’t regret meeting with him in the first place.

“I worked on Fox News for years, having conversations with people I disagree with, people who said and did things I thought were racist, sexist and xenophobic, but I had conversations with them because I thought it was important,” he said.

In response, Zionist Organization of America president Morton Klein called on Wednesday for Hill’s firing from the university and cable channel. Klein pointed out that Hill had written on Instagram after his Farrakhan meeting that he had had “An amazing time of learning, listening, laughing, and even head nodding to music.”

“Can you imagine the reaction if someone insisted on ‘amazing’ ‘learning, listening, and laughing’ etc. with David Duke?” Klein wrote. “Such an individual would immediately be fired from every respectable media station and university in the country. Shouldn’t someone who praises and insists upon learning from, listening to, and laughing together with hate-mongering Louis Farrakhan be treated similarly?”

Klein pointed out that Hill has expressed support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel and once tweeted that President Trump’s call for Palestinians to reject terrorism was “offensive & counterproductive.”

Contact Aiden Pink at [email protected]

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.