Ronan Farrow Gets Racism Because His Mom Had ‘Black Mother-itis’

Ronan Farrow attends The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute benefit gala celebrating "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" on Monday, May 5, 2014, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
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MSNBC’s Ronan Farrow said he understands racism because he has an adopted black brother and his white mother had “black mother-itis.”

Farrow made the comments on his Monday show in response to The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart, who argued that black men have to take extra steps to stay safe in public, during a segment about an unarmed black teenager who was shot by police in suburban St. Louis over the weekend.

Capehart, who is African-American, described how as a child he had been told to not “run with anything in your hands” and “keep a discreet distance away from white women, lest you get accused of any number of things.”

“You know it resonates so much for me on a personal level because I grew up with a black brother and people talk about this term ‘black mother-itis’: black mothers fearing exactly what you’re talking about,” Farrow said in response. “My white mother had ‘black mother-itis.'”

“I mean I heard this speech so many times. My brother was a big black guy and he would run in the supermarket as a young teenager and she would say ‘you can’t do that,'” Farrow continued. “And that he had to dress in a different way from me because there were all these fears maybe violence against him if he went across the street in a hoodie, if he went across the street in a certain way.”

Watch the clip, via Mediaite, here.

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  1. Very interesting. I was not aware Farrow had adopted a Black male child.
    I am impressed that Mia was aware that - like Black moms and dads - she, too had to caution her son regarding certain actions. Good for her

    Never heard the term “Black mother-itis”; ya learn something new every day

  2. Avatar for sjk sjk says:

    So says Frank Sinatra Jr…

  3. Sorry, doesn’t excuse his man crush for Rand Paul.

  4. Mia Farrow is a Strong Black Woman!

  5. Avatar for malka malka says:

    In context, it was a valuable comment. I think the black motheritis part was unfortunate. It’s the kind of silly thing I might say-- then rephrase a minute later.

    It sounded like he was saying something else.

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