Columnist Michael Harriot wrote a piece for The Root with the headline “Pete Puttigieg is a lying MF” on Monday, 25 November, and Buttigieg called him within 24 hours asking for explanation. “Men like him are more willing to perpetuate the fantastic narrative of negro neighborhoods needing more role models and briefcase-carriers than make the people in power stare into the sun and see the blinding light of racism,” Harriot wrote. To this Buttigieg responded that kids need evidence that the educational system puts them as a main priority. In response, Harriot’s op-ed detailed how Buttigieg’s remarks followed a familiar pattern of white people upholding longstanding racial inequality. “I don’t think I’ve ever been called a ‘lying motherf**ker’ before,” Buttigieg told Harriot, according to a second piece for The Root that Harriot wrote detailing their phone call. The pair spoke for 20 minutes, and Harriot said they reached a common ground.