CNN anchor Don Lemon abruptly ended a segment with Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy after a tense back-and-forth about gun rights and black Americans.
During an interview on “CNN This Morning,” co-host Poppy Harlow asked Ramaswamy about his speech last week at the NRA convention. In that speech, Ramaswamy connected gun control laws and the campaign to oppress black Americans after the Civil War.
We fought a civil war in this country to give black Americans the equal protection under the law that we failed to secure them in 1776. But then, you want to know what happened? Southern states passed anti-gun laws that stopped black people from owning guns; the Democrat Party, then as in now, wanted to put them back in chains.
Ramaswamy told Harlow that he was referring to President Joe Biden’s infamous 2012 claim that Republicans want to put black Americans “back in chains.”
But in reality, Ramaswamy said, he believes the Democratic Party’s agenda — from Lyndon Johnson to Joe Biden — is “really bad for the black community” and “holding black Americans back.”
That’s when Lemon registered his astonishment that Ramaswamy connected oppression to gun control laws.
“I don’t really see what one has to do with the other,” Lemon argued. “That war was not fought for black people to have guns.”
“That war was fought for black people to have freedoms in this country, actually,” Ramaswamy fired back. “That’s why the Civil War was fought.”
The men then embarked on a disagreement about whether black Americans enjoy any freedom today. Lemon argued they don’t, a claim Ramaswamy said is a “disservice to our country.” It was at that point that Lemon attempted to discredit Ramaswamy because he is not black.
“When you are in black skin and you live in this country, then you can disagree with me,” Lemon told Ramaswamy.
“Don, I think we have to be able to talk about these issues in the open regardless of the color of our skin,” Ramaswamy pushed back. “Black Americans today … absolutely have equal rights in this country.”
Lemon, however, claimed that Ramaswamy was “insulting” black people and said “it’s infuriating” for Ramaswamy to connect gun control and the oppression of black Americans.
The two then argued back and forth over whose version of history is correct. Lemon said Ramaswamy was wrong, but when Ramaswamy asked Lemon to specify what he is wrong about, Lemon incorrectly restated Ramaswamy’s argument, alleging Ramaswamy believes the Civil War was fought “only for black people to get guns.”
At the end of their argument, Lemon appeared to retierate his belief that Ramaswamy had no justification for his argument because he is not black.
“I think we should be able to express our view regardless of the color of our skin. We should have this debate without me regarding you as a black man,” Ramaswamy argued.
“I think it’s insulting that you’re sitting here explaining to me about what it’s like to be black in America,” Lemon responded.
The CNN host then ended the conversation by scolding Ramaswamy, telling him that he was not debating in a fair or honest manner.
It is true that after the Civil War, southern states passed what are known as the “Black Codes” to prevent newly freed slaves from possessing and owning firearms.
While not a violent person by nature, I’d love 5 minutes alone with that twisted lemon brained moron.