Lee Daniels People Got My 'White People' Comment all Wrong

1/7/2017 7:29 AM PST

Lee Daniels was super introspective Friday night when he elaborated on a comment that triggered a lot of hate ... "I wanted white people to feel good about being white people because right now, there's a lot of hatred going on."

We got Lee leaving Estrella restrauant on the Sunset Strip when he explained his comment.  It's not a "pro-white" thing ... it's much deeper.

Check out the vid.  It's super interesting.