UPDATE, June 29, 2023: This article was incorrectly marked as News. It has been updated to reflect the correct category, Commentary.
CNN’s Don Lemon gave a Republican presidential hopeful a shocking reason why he cannot disagree about the experience of Black Americans.
Entrepreneur and 2024 Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy was confronted over his comments at an NRA conference when he spoke about gun laws after the Civil War.
Lemon suggested on Wednesday the presidential hopeful was insisting the Civil War was fought so Black people could have guns.
Ramaswamy responded, “That war was fought for Black people to have freedoms in this country. That’s why the Civil War was fought.”
He added, “Actually, you wanna know a funny fact is Black people did not get to enjoy the other freedoms until their Second Amendment rights were secured.
However, Lemon insisted, “Black people still aren’t allowed to enjoy the freedoms…”
“I disagree with you,” Ramaswamy responded, adding, “I disagree with you on that. I think you’re doing a disservice to our country by failing to recognize that we have equality under the law.”
Lemon shot back with a draw-dropping assertion as he said, “When you are in Black skin and you live in this country, then you can disagree with me. But we’re not.”
Ramaswamy insisted, “I think we have to be able to talk about these issues and be open regardless of the color of our skin. Black Americans today… to compare that to 1865 and 1964 absolutely have equal rights in this country.”
Watch the video below:
Don Lemon says GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy doesn't get to have an opinion on the Civil War because he's not black pic.twitter.com/Kt4upNNaRQ
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) April 20, 2023
For context, during the NRA conference, Ramaswamy, who announced his presidential bid in February, said, “I want you to raise your hand if you know when the first anti-gun laws were passed in this country. Raise your hand if you do. 1865.”
He added, “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 wanna 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.”
To be clear, America is not perfect. And racism and discrimination have not entirely been rooted out of society. But the country is in a lot better state than it was in 1865 and there are a lot more legal protections now than before the Civil War.
And Lemon’s notion that Ramaswamy cannot weigh in on the experience of Black people in America is ridiculous.
It might be one thing if his name was John Smith and he was white and lecturing the host about the subject.
But with a name like Vivek Ramaswamy, and being the son of Indian immigrants, he might know a thing or two about the experience of minorities in this country.
Yet, according to Lemon’s shocking assertion, you can only disagree with someone’s assessment of a certain demographic’s experience if you are the same skin color. And if you are not, then you must shut up and simply agree with them.
And it is made even more shocking by some on the Left’s belief that if you are Black and you disagree with them on issues about race, you are trying to “protect white supremacists.”
Of course, Lemon did not go that far. But his comment kind of echoes the idea that only a certain group of people with a certain view can be right — and nobody else can disagree in good faith.
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