Whoopi Goldberg Defends Stephen A. Smith: “If You Hit a Man, Don’t Be Surprised if He Hits Back” [video]


Growing up, I was always taught that no matter how angry someone got, violence was not an acceptable solution. Beyond that, as a young lady, I was also told that you should never raise your hand to a man because they may not have been brought up with the same set of values.

Which brings us again to the discussion of Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice, and the incident involving his wife Janay in an Atlantic City Casino elevator earlier this year. It was widely reported that Janay initiated the altercation. Janay even asked NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to be lenient in his punishment of Rice.

Rice’s situation and subsequent suspension sparked a topic on “First Take,” where Stephen A. Smith stated that women should not do anything to “provoke” a man.  Poorly worded, some took this statement as Smith blaming the victim and lashed out against him. Ultimately, Smith had to apologize, but someone agrees with Smith’s point and took to the airwaves to defend his POV.

On a recent episode of ABC’s “The View,” Whoopi Goldberg echoed Stephen A’s thoughts.

Smith said late last week that women should not do anything to “provoke” men into striking them. Goldberg agreed with this point and stated, “If you hit somebody, you cannot be sure you are not going to get hit back!”

Jenny McCarthy and guest co-host Sunny Hostin pushed back against Goldberg’s argument, telling Goldberg she’s blaming the victim. Goldberg insisted she wasn’t, saying no one should hit anyone, period. However:

“If you make the choice as a woman who’s four foot three and you decide to hit a guy who’s six feet tall and you’re the last thing he wants to deal with that day and he hits you back, you cannot be surprised!”



I agreed with both Whoopi and Stephen A’s point. This is not excusing a man hitting a woman, that’s not ok. But let’s stop acting as if people always do the right thing and react accordingly. What’s wrong with spreading the message that women too should keep their hands to themselves and walk away if they feel that upset.

  • Renaissance Man

    I think what we have here is two things. 1.) Stephen A could have more clearly stated his point (i.e. DON’T USE THE WORD PROVOKE) 2.) Anytime you speak of a man hitting a woman, generally speaking, women lose all ability to think and hear clearly.

    I applaud Whoopi for what she said, because it’s true. And to prove my second point, look at how Whoopi was jumped on by two of the women on that panel, before she could even get her point out. You have to teach girls, not to put their hands on a man–and if you do, don’t assume that a man has this chivalry thing going with them. If you swing on a man in 2014, right or wrong, the chance that you might get swung on has gone up exponentially!

  • Gary

    The girl on the far right opposite Whoopi has zero ability to listen to what everyone was saying. What an idiot

  • johng_3

    Whoopi is the only one I listen to on that show. Plus, what gives women just the right to just verbally and physically insult men without expecting somekind of reaction. She was pissing off a NFL football player.
    I respect Jay-Z for that incident in the elevator with Solage and for not punching that bitch out. He got punched, yelled and spit on. If he reacted, the media would of been all over him.
    Note: Its Goldberg, not Gildberg in the title

  • mslady1972

    Why does our culture love violence so much? Men have far more physical strength than women, therefore it is never okay for a man to hit a woman. EVER. Have we as a society lost all of our senses? Is it so difficult for men to behave as men? Are men that easily set off? What about beating a kid? The evening news is loaded with dads who have beat their kids to death because the kid talked back and they just “lost it”. Is that okay? Whoopi Goldberg has an antiquated mentality. I just do not understand this apparently prevalent belief that it is okay for a man to hit any woman, let alone one he is in a relationship with. This is sickening. I would die if my son ever hit a female. If he is in a relationship with a combative woman, then he should end the relationship. When I was growing up when my mother got mad at my dad and said something mean he would laugh it off and say “that’s my girl”. He would laugh when my sisters and I would get smart with him. He thought women getting angry was funny, even cute. Why? Because he was a man. A fight with a female was never going to be a fair fight. What kind of guys are out there nowadays? They get mad so they hit a woman? Wow. I am shocked by how many people support this attitude.

  • mslady1972

    And that is indeed a sad commentary on our society.

  • Doug

    I don’t think you really understand what she’s saying. Whoopi’s not saying it’s okay for men to hit women. Her mentality isn’t antiquated. It’s quite accurate when she says that men nowadays aren’t as respectful as they used to be, and that they’re more cases of domestic abuse (like Ray Rice’s case) popping up all over the world. So now, the mentality that she’s explaining is that don’t expect every single guy out there to just stand there if you’re in an argument and you hit them. Because some them might just hit you back. She’s just pointing out the sad reality that is going on today. Nobody on that show, including whoopi, supports domestic abuse.

  • bongoman55

    Last I checked she is an attorney. Could not be that stupid. What’s your claim to smarts? Do you have a J D? Bad listening skill does not equate to stupidity, it a lack of decipline.

  • bongoman55

    If you work in a bank and you are being robbed, you follow instructions, and do nothing to aggravate the robber. Similarly, if you are in a tense spousal situation, you do nothing to ascerbate a situation that’s already volatile….. That is Stephen. A’s point. It does not need a Harvard MBA to understand that he was not advocating violence. ESPN is a Disney Co. It wants to preserve a perceived pristine image. If my wife is mad, I head to the Golf course. We talk when she is calm. It applies to men and women……the Don’t provoke theory.

  • Jokylos

    You’re missing the point. Not talking about arguments, name calling and being sassy. Regardless of who you are, if you make the decision to put your hands on someone, you should fully expect for them to put their hands on you…. Bottom line.

  • Ms. 51

    I expect, demand that all men respect women. We are their wives, their daughters and their mothers. But, my mother always insisted that no one has the right to hit anyone; no man has a right to hit another man, woman, child. However, if I as a woman decide to behave contrary to that of a lady, I shouldn’t be surprised if a man loses his composure.

    Bottom line Ray Rice was 1000 percent wrong, but so was she. Stephen A., was merely pointing out the obvious, violence is not excusable for man or woman. If things are that heated, you need to walk away, I sat this to both men and women.

  • Terry

    I think it’s sadder that so many people believe a woman has the right to assault a man and the man is expected to just take it. What’s wrong with teaching women not to assault men? Where does this idea that women have a right to assault men come from? It’s not OK for anyone to assault anyone. Unbelievable.

  • Chuck

    Then that makes it worse…being a lawyer. Men stay away from her…you are already guilty and she’s your lawyer.

  • Chuck

    Wow! You missed the bus. Reread or listen again to her words….some women are having a hard time understanding…keep your hands to yourself doesn’t just apply to men. It’s some of you women putting your hands on men…then cry wolf when he meet your threat.

  • G house

    Saw a video on the news of a cop repeatedly punching a woman on the interstate. Didn’t hear too much about that case.

  • charlotteatipton

    There ARE NO journalists left, just idiots like dingle tingle, brian williams