Cable news anchors yell at guests all the time. Guys like Bill O'Reilly, Chris Matthews and Lawrence O'Donnell lose their cool on a regular basis. But there's something about the clip of MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry yelling at guest financial expert Monica Mehta on a program on Saturday that's touching a nerve with viewers.
The context was a panel discussion touched off by the book "Why Americans Hate Welfare" by Princeton professor Martin Gilens. In the book, Gilens asserts that the public distaste for welfare is a direct offshoot of the 20-year-old efforts of the media to link welfare to black people.
While Harris-Perry seemed deeply affected by the debate, it wasn't until Mehta said that class mobility is "enabled by taking risks" by wealthy entrepreneurs that the host lost it.
"What is riskier than being poor in America? Seriously?" she yelled. Mehta seemed taken aback.
Harris-Perry continued, "I live in a neighborhood where people are shot on my street corner. I live in a neighborhood where people have to figure out how to get their kid into school because maybe it will be a good school and maybe it won't. I'm sick of the idea that being wealthy is risky."