CNN’s Don Lemon Talks That Talk, But Won’t Walk That Walk on “Stop and Frisk” Laws

| November 6, 2013 | 0 Comments

by Yvette Carnell

How can anyone dare match Don Lemon’s fiendish deployment of the “Politics of Respectability” against black and brown people. Lemon has already castigated black men and boys for wearing saggy pants, and today he condoned the revocation of the rights guaranteed black and brown people in the Constitution.

It could only get worse if Lemon, like Justice Clarence Thomas, once took advantage of the tools available for remedying racism before making it to the top, then shuddering the doors and windows behind him. As it turns out, that’s exactly what Lemon did. Even as he lectured us today on the necessity of racial profiling with ‘stop and frisk’, he knew full well that he himself had sued after being racially profiled at a record store in 2001.

Appearing on a radio show today, Lemon asked whether black people would “rather be politically correct or safe and alive?” Lemon said minorities want to be treated nicely and have officers ask, “Sir, I’m sorry, but I need to check your bag and your person,” but then added, “they know that that’s not the reality of things on the street.”

But even though Lemon has come out in favor of “stop and frisk” after becoming a well known CNN anchor, he wasn’t in favor of racial profiling while he was a local anchor in Philadelphia. From

TV reporter Don Lemon’s lawyer calls it a case of “shopping while black.”

Lemon, an African-American who is general assignment reporter for WCAU-TV (Channel 10), has filed suit against Tower Records and a white, former security employee of the Tower Records Video Books shop at Broad and Chestnut streets charging that he was followed two blocks to his car after purchasing a compact disc player there the afternoon of Feb. 3, roughed up, and accused of shoplifting.

Although much from Lemon’s early career has been scrubbed from the internet, his time at WCAU-TV is listed in his online biography.

Unlike many black men who are profiled, Don Lemon was rescued by a police officer who recognized him from Channel 10.

So let’s break this down: Don Lemon is fine with black and brown people in New York being stopped and frisked based on the off chance that they might be in possession of guns or drugs, but Lemon filed a lawsuit when a Tower store security guard followed him to his car, believing Lemon had lifted a CD player? The key here is the presumption of innocence, as in who gets afforded it and who does not.

Lemon believes that he, a respectable Negro, is entitled to the presumption of innocence, while other less fortunate blacks are not. You shouldn’t stop Lemon because he has achieved. You shouldn’t suspect him because he’s a professional. Other black men and boys, however, don’t deserve that very same presumption of innocence. They’re on their own. Lemon isn’t like them and doesn’t want to be associated with them. Stop and frisk those black men all you like, but if you get huffy with him after he’s purchased a CD player, then all hell breaks loose. He’s not going to take it sitting down, like he wants black people in New Yorkers to do.

Try as you might, you cannot acquit Lemon of establishing a standard for other blacks that he himself is unwilling to live by. In his complaint, Lemon said he suffered an “inability to engage in his work and/or occupations” that was worth $50,000. That’s what Lemon felt he deserved. You, however, should just get over it. You don’t deserve anything. And if you would just pull your saggy pants up, it would all just work itself out.

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