The former Grey's Anatomy actor appears to suggest Rock should drive a less expensive car

By Tim Nudd
Updated April 02, 2015 11:45 AM
Michael Stewart/WireImage; Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Isaiah Washington has caused a social media stir after appearing to tell Chris Rock that he needs to “adapt” to racial profiling – and maybe consider driving a different car – after the comedian was pulled over by police three times in recent months.

The former Grey’s Anatomy actor posted a Tweet on Wednesday afternoon saying he’s driving a less expensive car himself these days – and seeming to suggest Rock should do the same.

Rock, 50, did not respond publicly, but plenty of others did, including Roots drummer Questlove – slamming Washington, 51, for what they saw as a ridiculous suggestion.

Washington – who caused controversy back in 2007 and was forced to apologize after making a gay slur in the presence of Grey’s costar T.R. Knight – posted a follow-up Tweet on Wednesday suggesting people had misinterpreted him.

The actor, who now stars on The CW’s The 100, later appeared on CNN and was asked to clarify his comments.

“At night, if [the police] don’t recognize me, I’m vulnerable like everyone else,” he said. “I will say this. Once I got out of my G500 and have been driving the Prius for the last four years, with windows that are tinted darker than the windows that were tinted in my $90,000 vehicle, I have not been pulled over one time.”

On the topic of Chris Rock specifically, Washington said: “Obviously he hasn’t broken any laws. And what you drive shouldn’t matter, particularly if you are an African-American man. But if you are at war, which we all know that we are, there is a sentiment in the air that is highly toxic, highly negative.”

Maybe what Rock should do, Washington added, is talk to the police directly.

“He needs to look at the area that he’s in, and maybe even visit with the local police officers in that community,” he said. “Because I got pulled over so many times, they should have memorized my driver’s license.”