A debate is brewing on social media on the issue of Kamala Harris's race. Atlanta Black Star recalled the intense debate between CNN anchor Don Lemon and political analyst April Ryan on February 13, 2019.
Lemon and Ryan argued over whether Harris, 55, could call herself African American, Black or mixed-race.
Lemon concluded that Harris -- the product of an Indian mother and mixed-race Jamaican father -- is in fact mixed race and definitely not African American.
Lemon, 54, shouted down Ryan when she tried to emphatically insist that Harris was African American.
"[Harris] is a Black woman," said Ryan. "She is a mixed-race woman. When you see her, you see her Blackness. But she is also South Asian ... and her dad is Jamaican. She is a Black woman."
But Lemon argued that Harris doesn't share the experience of American descendants of slaves, also known as "ADOS."
"No, no, no, no. I don't think you hear what people are saying. To want the distinction to say is she African-American, or is she Black or is she -- whatever -- there is nothing wrong with that. There is a difference between being African-American and being Black."
Ryan interjected: "So she could indeed be African-American mixed with others, but she is a Black woman."
"Jamaica is not America," Lemon said, interrupting Ryan. "Jamaica did not come out of Jim Crow. I'm just saying."
"She was born here in America!" Ryan shot back. "So, let's talk about [Sen.] Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz was born in Canada and his father —"
"This isn’t about Ted Cruz,” Lemon interrupted her, accusing his guest of changing the subject.
"It's hypocrisy! I'm not changing the subject!" Ryan shouted. "I don't know what you want from me."
"You're missing the point," Lemon told Ryan. "People are asking if you are African-American if you are someone who came out of Jim Crow, out of American slavery. Are you [a] descendant out of that? That's all I’m saying."
Watch the debate between Lemon and Ryan below.