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Don Lemon’s speech on royal reparations lambasted by Tories

CNN anchor Don Lemon was recently slammed by former President Donald Trump as “the dumbest man on television.” Now conservative social media users are rushing Lemon over his discussion of whether the Royal Family should be made to pay reparations.

On Tuesday, a snippet of an interview Lemon conducted on the day of Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral went viral on Twitter. Many right-wing users praised his guest, royal commentator Hilary Fordwich, for her response to the rendition.

Lemon first cited England’s cost of living crisis before discussing those who have sought reparations due to the country’s colonial history.

“Some people want to be reimbursed, and members of the public are like, ‘Why are we suffering when you have all this immense wealth?'” he said. “These are legitimate concerns.”

Here, Don Lemon poses for a photo during Clive Davis’ 90th birthday celebration at Casa Cipriani in New York City on April 6, 2022. The CNN anchor is under fire for calling the family’s demands for reparations of “legitimate concerns”.
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Fordwich replied that Lemon was “right about the repairs” before taking the interview in a different direction. First, she said, one would have to consider the start of the slavery “supply chain.”

“It was in Africa, and when it crossed the whole world when slavery was taking place, what was the first nation in the world that abolished slavery?” said Fordwich. “The first nation in the world to abolish it…was the British. In Britain, they abolished slavery.”

Fordwich went on to say that if repairs were needed, then you would have to “go back to the beginning of that supply chain and say, ‘Who was rounding up their people and having them handcuffed in cages?’

Conservative Twitter reveled in what they saw as a misstep by Lemon and a right-wing outlet The daily thread covered the exchange, too.

“CNN’s@DonLemon tells royal commentator Hilary Fordwich that the Royal Family should pay for reparations – immediately regrets it,” journalist Tom Elliott wrote in the tweet went viral.

Chris Loesch, husband of former National Rifle Association spokesperson Dana Loesch, retweeted the clip.

“When you see someone being stunned by the real story,” he wrote in the tweet.

British far-right YouTuber Paul Joseph Watson has also share the tweet, adding the caption: “This is delicious.”

But some directed their criticism at Fordwich instead, with writer Jessica Aiwuyor urging others to “STOP falling in love with the ‘Africans have sold us’ narrative.”

Aiwuyor then continued that such an argument, used by Europeans seeking to disempower themselves, leads to the “minimization of repairs.”

“Africans have sold us the narrative is a catch-all and too many people continue to fall for it,” she continued in a thread. “It’s getting us nowhere [sic] and aids to the tools of white supremacy to blame the victims.”

Many social justice advocates in the United States have called for reparations in recent years. Newsweek previously reported that black people have never benefited from a “federally sanctioned system of reparations”, even though Native Americans and Japanese have received some form of reimbursement for “historic wrongs”.

Lemon has already weighed in on his thoughts on the royal family. He recently said it was “shocking” that Meghan Markle apparently didn’t encounter racism before dating husband Prince Harry.

Newsweek contacted representatives of Lemon and Fordwich for comment.


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