Dan Bongino and Geraldo Rivera engaged in a heated debate Wednesday that quickly devolved into insults.
Both men appeared on “Hannity” to address ongoing unrest and violence following the shooting death of Daunte Wright in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota. (RELATED: ‘Don’t You Dare Be A Fraud Right Now!’: Dan Bongino And Geraldo Rivera Trade Barbs Over Rayshard Brooks)
Rivera weighed in first, noting that the consensus was the police officer who ultimately shot and killed Wright had done so when she accidentally drew her service weapon instead of her taser. His suggestion was to train officers so that the taser, rather than a firearm, was on their dominant side in such situations. He argued that would make the taser the default and perhaps lower the incidence of fatal shootings.
“If you had the taser in your dominant hand are more likely to use the nonlethal weapon and you could avoid the 18 accidental police shootings where the cops thought he or she was using a taser,” Rivera said.
“I don’t even know how to respond to that,” Bongino began. “Give me a second here to digest —”
“You’re nothing but a name-caller. A cheap shot artist,” Rivera interrupted.
“There’s a big difference between reporting on a baseball game and playing it, Geraldo. You never worn a badge, period,” Bongino said then, arguing that no matter how often Rivera had reported on police officers, he still didn’t have the insight that came from serving in law enforcement.
“If you put the firearm on the other side, you would probably have to cross draw because you want to fire with your dominant hand,” Bongino went on to explain the problem with switching the taser to the dominant side. “If you were ever a cop, you would know that but you reported on policing. What’s the problem with a cross draw? The problem is when you are tackled and put on the ground, the weapon is more accessible to the bad guy than it is to you. But because you have never done policing, never done control tactics, but you are reporting on it, you wouldn’t know any of that. So maybe a little bit of humble pie. Back off. Stop telling everyone about your great reporting. Deal with facts. Realize you don’t know what you think you know. You just know what you think you reported on. Those are two separate things. I don’t pretend to be a journalist. I’m an opinion maker. Stop pretending to be a cop.”
The two continued to go back and forth, talking over each other as the debate went on. Bongino accused Rivera of inflaming the racial narrative without any evidence to back it up.
“If there was a plague of police officers hunting black men down at night, I don’t understand. If that’s happening, where is the massive body count?” Bongino pressed.
“This man with his baloney. This is baloney,” Rivera shot back.
Bongino once again accused Rivera of throwing race into the argument when it wasn’t warranted, prompting Rivera to respond, “You tell that to the black families that see their sons being killed.”
“You’ve got nothing. All you want to do is see the country burn. You just want to see the country burn,” Bongino pushed back.
“I want to see the country burn?”Rivera asked. “You son of a bitch. I want to see the country burn, you punk? You’re a punk, Dan Bongino.”