“Pull Up Your Pants!” Don Lemon’s Advice To Black Community Has Changed A Lot Since 2013
US journalist Don Lemon attends the premiere of "Shaft" at AMC Lincoln Square on June 10, 2019 in New York City.
ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

Throughout 2020, and especially during the wave of Black Lives Matter riots which brought multiple American cities to their knees, CNN’s Don Lemon was on the journalistic front lines, offering justification and apologies for the racially-motivated violence spreading across the country.

Then, he rejected the comparison of the widely condemned riots at the US Capitol building in Washington, D.C., on January 6 to the Black Lives Matter “protests,” saying that “one is built on people, on racial justice, on criminal justice, right, on reform, on police not beating up — or police treating people of color differently than they do whites. Okay? That is not a lie. Those are facts.”

Interestingly, Lemon’s full embrace of the radical Left’s racial narrative is a far cry from the “alternative facts” he offered in July of 2013 when he tried to explain how black people could “fix the problem” for themselves. During the segment titled “No Talking Points,” Lemon made no mention of the systemic racism or police brutality which has now become his central focus when it comes to matters of race.

The segment began with “The Trayvon Martin murder case got just about everybody talking about race, and not just specifically how it related to the case. It got some, many on the political Right, wondering why the so-called liberal media wasn’t talking about other problems in the black community.”

Later, he offered some “tough love on the subject.” After saying that Bill O’Reilly’s analysis was correct, Lemon continued.

“But in my estimation, he doesn’t go far enough. Because black people, if you really want to fix the problem, here’s just five things that you should think about doing.”

Number 5: “Pull up your pants.”

“Here’s number five, and if this doesn’t apply to you, if you’re not doing this, then it doesn’t apply to you, I’m not talking to you. Here’s number five. Pull up your pants.”

CNN then played a clip of Lemon on The Wendy Williams Show, saying “If you’re sagging, I mean — I think it’s your self-esteem that is sagging and who you are as a person it’s sagging. Young people need to be taught respect and there are rules.”

After the clip, Lemon summarized.

“Sagging pants, whether Justin Bieber or No-name Derek around the way, walking around with your ass and your underwear showing is not OK. In fact, it comes from prison when they take away belts from the prisoners so that they can’t make a weapon. And then it evolved into which role a prisoner would have during male-on-male prison sex. The one with the really low pants is the submissive one. You get my point?”

Number 4: N-word.

“Number four now is the n-word,” said Lemon, then playing clips of Jay-Z and Chris Rock saying that they, in some manner, “took this word” back.

“I understand poetic license, but consider this: I hosted a special on the n-word, suggesting that black people stop using it and that entertainers stop deluding yourselves or themselves and others that you’re somehow taking the word back,” said Lemon.

In a clip of that special, Lemon said, “By promoting the use of that word when it’s not germane to the conversation, have you ever considered that you may be just perpetuating the stereotype the master intended acting like a n*****?”

Continuing, Lemon said “A lot of African-Americans took offense to that, too. I wonder if I gave the right advice, I really did. But confirmation came the very next day on my way home when I exited the subway in 125th Street in Harlem. This little kid in a school uniform no older than seven years old, he was crying his eyes out as he walked down the sidewalk with his mother.”

“I’m going to be honest here, she turned to me, and she said ‘I’m sick of you. You act like an old ass man, stop all that crying, n*****.’ Is that taking the word back? Think about that,” he added.

Number 3: Respect your neighborhood.

“Respect where you live,” Lemon said. “Start small by not dropping trash, littering in your own communities. I’ve lived in several predominantly white neighborhoods in my life, I rarely, if ever, witnessed people littering. I live in Harlem now, it’s an historically black neighborhood, every single day I see adults and children dropping their trash on the ground when a garbage can is just feet away. Just being honest here.”

Number 2: Finish school.

“You want to break the cycle of poverty? Stop telling kids they’re acting white because they go to school or they speak proper English,” declared Lemon. “A high school dropout makes on average $19,000 a year, a high school graduate makes $28,000 a year, a college graduate makes $51,000 a year. Over the course of a career, a college grad will make nearly $1 million more than a high school graduate. That’s a lot of money.”

Number 1: Don’t have children out of wedlock.

Describing this point as “probably the most important,” Lemon said that “just because you can have a baby, it doesn’t mean you should.”

“Especially without planning for one or getting married first,” Lemon continued. “More than 72 percent of children in the African-American community are born out of wedlock. That means absent fathers. And the studies show that lack of a male role model is an express train right to prison and the cycle continues. So, please, black folks, as I said if this doesn’t apply to you, I’m not talking to you. Pay attention to and think about what has been presented in recent history as acceptable behavior. Pay close attention to the hip-hop and rap culture that many of you embrace. A culture that glorifies everything I just mentioned, thug and reprehensible behavior, a culture that is making a lot of people rich, just not you. And it’s not going to. That said, though, the political right is not off the hook.”

Ian Haworth is an Editor and Writer for The Daily Wire. Follow him on Twitter at @ighaworth.

The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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