We Need To Talk About Don Lemon
Are the black men who voted for Donald Trump on the side of the Klan?
I need to play you some audio from Don Lemon and his exchange with Chris Cuomo on CNN. This is an abbreviated version of the exchange here.
That's Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo on CNN. Don Lemon holds the position that if you voted for Donald Trump, you're on the side of the Klan. If you voted for Donald Trump, you're on the side of people who stormed the Capitol. Chris Cuomo asks, "What if you don't like him, but you liked his policies?" And Don Lemon still says, "You're on the side of the Klan." 75 million Americans, including a growing number of black and Hispanic voters voted for Donald Trump. Are the black men who voted for Donald Trump on the side of the Klan? Are the Hispanic voters, male and female who voted for Donald Trump, on the side of the Klan? No. That Don Lemon would say this on CNN is part of CNN's problem. It's part of the media's problem.
The American mainstream media, and by that, I mean the major media outlets of this country from the New York Times to the Washington Post to CNN to NBC, ABC, CBS, and even PBS, are deeply hostile to the 75 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump. Instead of trying to understand their concerns, for the most part, they treat them as if they're part of the KKK. They treat them as part of a conspiracy. You see progressives online, increasingly vocal people, including James Clapper, formerly with the CIA, now a talking head on TV, suggesting that there's got to be some sort of truth and reconciliation commission. If you support Donald Trump, you've got to be publicly shamed unless you apologize and renounce it.
75 million people voted for Donald Trump. Donald Trump lawfully and legitimately was elected president of the United States for four years. To shame 75 million Americans, it's not going to work. CNN prides itself of being a news network. But CNN also really likes to do this stuff these days. This is really important for everyone to understand. The very clickbaity stuff and outrage media that CNN accuses Fox News of doing is also done at CNN. It attracts a liberal audience that doesn't want to consider itself so far whacked out that they go to MSNBC. But CNN is catering to that audience with Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo.
Increasingly a group of voters who are center-right, who voted for Donald Trump's policies, even if they don't care for him, are alienated away from a media and where do they go? They go to the internet to find their news. And what do they find? QAnon conspiracy theories. QAnon can exist and thrive because the mainstream American media has gotten into a progressive bubble. Many people don't trust the media because of what the media has done. Those people go looking for news outlets and they fall down rabbit holes and get trapped in conspiracy land. CNN and ABC and NBC and CBS and PBS and the New York Times and the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times and USA Today and the like, they are all culpable. They all must share blame for this happening.
A great many Americans are distrustful of the media, and the media on a daily basis gives them reasons why. When you have a CNN anchor saying that 75 million people affiliated with the Klan by voting for Donald Trump, there are 74.9 million of those people who are good, hardworking American citizens who love their country, care about its direction, care about the culture, and just want to go back to work. They see what left wing policies would offer them: increased taxes, increased burdens on gun ownership, increased abortion. They say, "I may not like the guy, but I got to go vote for him because look at the alternative. I can't go over there." Meanwhile, Don Lemon is so far in that bubble, he participates in further alienation and division. CNN participates in further alienation by outright treating Trump voters and supporters with contempt.
There are contemptible people who support Donald Trump, but there are also contemptible people who support Joe Biden. The media was willing to give many of those contemptible people who support Joe Biden a pass when America was burning down this summer. You had Chris Cuomo, who was complicit with Don Lemon in this monologue, say that Antifa's no big deal. It was Chris Cuomo who was excusing violence over the summer, waving his hands that sometimes protests are violent. Americans understand double standards. When people on the right see and hear that sort of stuff, they understand they can't trust CNN. They can't trust the news they get from it because they know their worldview isn't going to be honestly reflected.
I have a lot of respect for the people who work at CNN. But when you've got an anchor at CNN saying that people who support the president's policies are on the side of the Klan, and there's not a rebuke from management or an apology from the anchor, why would any conservative want to spend time on the network. News networks, if they want to help fix the country, have to be mindful of that and do better themselves.
It is unacceptable to make such a blanket statement. It is alienating. It deepens divisions. It fosters greater distrust of traditional news sources. Don Lemon should apologize.