Pro-Reparations Sunny Hostin Discovers Spanish Ancestor Had a Role in the Slave Trade

Will Sunny Hostin be paying reparations anytime in the near future?

It’s a good question. The co-host of “The View,” shortly after the death of Queen Elizabeth II in September 2022, told viewers to “mourn the queen and not the empire.”

“If you really think about what the monarchy was built on, it was built on the backs of black and brown people,” Hostin said. “She wore a crown with pillaged stones from India and Africa. And now, what you are seeing, at least in the black communities that I’m a part of, they want reparations.”

She also had some advice for the new monarch: “Charles, now, is in a position, he, I think, has 14 colonies that he’s now head of state, including Australia and Canada, I believe, if I’m correct. It’s time for him to modernize this monarchy, and it’s time for him to provide reparations to all of those colonies.”

Now, never mind that Elizabeth reigned during the very time that the United Kingdom was divesting itself of its colonies and that, under King Charles, the only colonies that remain under U.K. rule do so of their own volition. If Anguilla or the Turks and Caicos Islands want to declare independence from Britain tomorrow, rest assured that Charles — as soon as his condition permits him, having been recently diagnosed with cancer — will be flying to the Caribbean to preside over the peaceful and merry transfer of power.


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Instead, the sins of colonialism — that dastardly “white supremacy” liberals seem to find everywhere — must be visited upon the sons and daughters.

Remember those comments. Remember the force and fervency with which they were delivered. Because they contrast significantly with Hostin’s reaction to, um, what we’ll charitably refer to as somewhat adverse information of a similar nature.

The “View” host was the latest celebrity to appear on “Finding Your Roots,” a PBS series dedicated to genealogy hosted by Harvard academic Henry Louis Gates Jr. Others appearing this season have included Brendan Fraser, Alanis Morissette, LeVar Burton and Ed O’Neill.

Hostin was one of the latest volunteers — dare I say victims? — to discover just who her forbears were. She has always identified as half-Puerto Rican, half-black. According to People magazine, Gates informed her as politely as possible that wasn’t really the case, at least on one side.

“Our researchers discovered that her third great-grandfather, Fermín, was the son of a merchant who was likely involved in the slave trade, and Fermín himself owned at least one human being,” he said during the episode.

“What’s more, moving back on this line, we found that it originates in Galicia, Spain — evidence of Sunny’s deeper ancestry and her family ties to Spain’s colonial past,” Gates said.

Well, that’s inconvenient.


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Furthermore, it turns out Hostin is only 7 percent indigenous Puerto Rican.

“Wow. I’m a little bit in shock,” she said after the news was broken to her.

“I just always thought of myself as Puerto Rican, you know, half Puerto Rican,” Hostin continued. “I didn’t think I was — my family was originally from Spain and slaveholders.”

And how did she feel about herself, knowing this new information?

“I think it’s actually pretty interesting that my husband and I have shared roots, so I do appreciate that,” Hostin said.

Should Sunny Hostin come out against reparations?

“And I think it’s great for our children to know this information,” she said. “I guess it’s a fact of life that this is how some people made their living — on the backs of others.”

Oh. When it’s your family that’s made its life “on the backs of others,” that’s some “pretty interesting” stuff. Hostin is a well-remunerated TV host, though. If the British royals got where they were by owning people, by the logic she used at the time of Elizabeth’s death, Hostin got where she is off the backs of owning people.

Are the reparations to be forthcoming? Considering she’s half-black and considers herself to be oppressed, does she pay herself a small percentage of those reparations and give the rest to the wider community of black and brown people harmed by her family’s actions?

No. She just finds it “pretty interesting” and an object lesson for her children — that, once upon a time, things were very different, both in this country and in others. And she still supports reparations for slavery, of course, as she said on “The View” on Thursday:

“I still believe in reparations,” she said. “I still believe this country has a lot to do in terms of racial justice.”

As for herself?

“I feel that I’m enriched by knowing that history, right?” Hostin said. “And I’m enriched by knowing that my family has come so far from being enslavers to my mother marrying my father in 1968.”

“You’re not responsible for what they did,” co-host Joy Behar assured her.

She’s not responsible for what her ancestors did — the same way other Americans and the monarchs of England are on the hook for what their ancestors did.

All enslavers and colonizers are equal, but some enslavers and colonizers are more equal than others.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he’s written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.

C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he’s written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).


Morristown, New Jersey


Catholic University of America

Languages Spoken

English, Spanish

Topics of Expertise

American Politics, World Politics, Culture

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