Don Lemon Tells Rapper Talib Kweli Why He is Not A Biased Reporter: ‘This is My Truth as a Black Man in America’


CNN host Don Lemon rejected the term “activism journalist” during an interview with rapper and activist Talib Kweli on Thursday — explaining that his “role as a journalist” is to report on topics he is familiar with as a Black man in America.

Kweli invited Lemon to his interview show People’s Party to discuss a heated 2014 interview between the two over CNN’s coverage of the Ferguson protests.

Once the reporter and rapper cleared the air, Kweli noted that Lemon has become more involved in activism since President Donald Trump’s election and the police killing of George Floyd, asking if he agrees that he has gone in the more “activist journalism direction.”

Lemon disagreed and explained that American people, specifically Black Americans, feel occupied by the police force in their communities due to a lack of understanding and affinity. The CNN host added that he is reporting facts from his point of view.

“I do not believe that is activism. I believe that is telling the truth and that is my role as a journalist,” he added. “There are certain times when you have to say, ok here is what the other side is saying. There are certain times as a journalist that I have to play devil’s advocate, but I don’t believe that in this moment anymore, and I don’t believe that with this administration.”

Kweli’s co-host Jasmin Leigh asked Lemon about journalists’ responsibilities during times of unrest, questioning how he balances his biases as a Black man while doing his job.

“My role as a journalist is to speak from my truth and from my lens and from where I come from, and I don’t think those things are biases, I think those things give me expertise in this particular subject,” he responded.

“Some people are economic reporters, they report on the economy, they report on Wall Street. Our doctor Sanjay Gupta is a medical doctor, he reports on medicine and science. I am a Black man who grew up and who lives and survives and works in America. I have a certain perspective and a certain point of view, and I’m bringing that important part of the diverse culture of this company to the fore, and I should be.”

Lemon added that he isn’t worried about what people who accuse him of bias think.

“I’m not biased,” he added. “This is my truth as a Black man in America.”

Watch above, via Youtube.

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