LeVar Burton Responds to Keith Olbermann Tweet Comparing Trump to Kunta Kinte


Actor and beloved children’s television host LeVar Burton responded to a now-deleted tweet by political commentator Keith Olbermann, comparing Burton’s Roots character to Donald Trump.

In a post responding to Trump’s Election Day interview on Fox & Friends, Olbermann tweeted: “Yes @realDonaldTrump has always been, will always be, and on the day of his bid for re-election, still is: a whiny little Kunta Kinte.” 


Olbermann was apparently trying to play off of the word “c–t,” but his post fell flat.

Burton chimed in on Twitter by writing Olbermann’s tactic didn’t work, mainly because the “u” in both words is pronounced differently. 

Before responding, the Star Trek: The Next Generation actor changed his Twitter profile photo to a still of Roots’ Kunta Kinte character using the hashtag #NewProfilePic.

Then he tweeted: “Dear @KeithOlbermann,  #Kunta is pronounced with a long “u” as in unity, not a short “u” as in cup. Try again! Love, Kunta”

Kunta Kinte first appeared in the 1976 novel by author Alex Haley titled “Roots: The Saga of an American Family,” of which the TV miniseries Roots is based off of. Burton played the teenage role of Kunta Kinte on television.  

Although Olbermann tried to clear up his choice of words by deleting the subtweet and explaining in a tweet thread that he was “using an old 70s-80s technique for calling somebody a c–t without writing/saying c–t”, Twitter users still slammed him for using “misogynist” and “racial slurs.”

Twitter user @VickiBa22634592 tweeted: “Regardless of how you spell or say it, it is still a very misogynist statement. I thought you better than that. #disappointed” 

Deadspin writer Carron J. Phillips wrote Olbermann’s explanation was “as stupid as the original tweet.”

Olbermann, who left ESPN last month, is currently the host of a political show on YouTube called The Worst Person in the World.