There’s no need to “assume” anything. It’s only “hard to know” if you didn’t read the link. I took a screenshot of the banter between the two, plus the larger conversation with Meryl Streep. You can just read what is on the page, or the longer version in which they talk about war, money, Jesus, etc. You guessed your way through defending her without actually bothering to check the context. Why?
She used the term “one of those people” which is still walking a very strange line of questioning, specifically for the person she was interviewing. It doesn’t take much effort or common sense to understand the weight of asking him that. I’m not sure I’m with you on the ignorance part. I think certain people are voluntarily choosing to ignore it, but yes, it’s possible. Not likely, but possible.
While I’ve always found it problematic to ask an actor about why they’d speak up about voting — as if somehow being in a movie miraculously means your ears and brain cannot handle the responsibility of politics and voting too — I disagree with you about her justifying her feelings 16 years later. It seems suspicious to me to do so. But it seems far more questionable of why she chose him in particular. She can say he gave her a hard time in a semantics debate. OK, fine. But I have yet to meet any journalist who hasn’t. It makes as much sense as an electrician complaining about broken light switches.
But saying he “jumped all over her” is the kind of annoying “she hit me last” tactic of toddlers. If you bring up a hot-button topic like politics, don’t suddenly become a damsel in distress when your interviewee responds. There have been far more critical issues going on around the station she worked for, including her colleagues, than that Denzel debate.
And once again, you’re saying “the podcast host asked her.” She was conducting the interview! I would really like to know your thoughts after you read that conversation.