Don Lemon to Terry Crews: Black Lives Matter ‘Not About What’s Happening in Black Neighborhoods’

Don Lemon to Terry Crews: Black Lives Matter ‘Not About What’s Happening in Black Neighborhoods’

Monday night on CNN, host Don Lemon had a heated debate with actor Terry Crews over the Black Lives Matter movement.

Crews said, “When you have the leaders of the Black Lives movement, who are now talking about, ‘If we don’t get our demands, we’re going to burn it down,’ other Black people who are talking about working with other whites and other races, they’re being viewed as sell-outs, or called Uncle Toms. You start to understand you’re now being controlled. You’re not being treated as loved. You’re actually being controlled. Someone wants to control the narrative. I viewed it as a very, very dangerous self-righteousness that was developing. That, you know, that really viewed themselves as better. It was almost a supremacist move where they viewed that their Black lives mattered a lot more than mine.”

Lemon asked, “You think Black Lives Matter, you said you think it’s an extreme movement?”

Crews said, “No, this is the thing. It’s a great mantra. It’s the true mantra. Black lives do matter. But, when you’re talking about an organization, you’re talking about the leaders, you are talking about the people who are responsible for putting these things together.”

Lemon said, “Terry, you realize that even during the civil rights movement, that Dr. King was seen as extreme? That movement was seen as extreme. To people who don’t want to make change, movements are seen as extreme. You can paint them easily, as extreme when they are not.”

Crews said, “When you look at the city of Chicago, there are nine children who’ve died by gun violence, by Black-on-Black gun violence from June 20th all the way to today.”

He added, “You’re talking about a month, and you have nine Black kids, and the Black Lives Matter movement has said nothing about this kind of thing.”

Lemon said, “What does that have to do with equality, though, Terry? I don’t understand what that has to do with equality?”

He added, “I lived in Chicago. There are many people who are working in those communities to try to get rid of the gun violence. The gun culture in this country is prevalent. But I don’t understand what that has to do with a movement that’s for equality for Black people. It’s not mutually exclusive that, if you care about equality for Black people, that somehow you are going to stop random violence, or, unfortunately, kids from being shot. It just seems like apples and oranges.”

Crews said, “You know, it’s not that way. You know, this is the thing, Don, you know Black people need to hold other Black people accountable. This is the Black America’s version of the Me Too movement. If anything’s going to change, we, ourselves, need to look at our own communities and look at each other and say this thing cannot go down. This is the thing too. There are a lot of great, great people there who are held, hostage. Who are held hostage by people who, literally, are running these neighborhoods with violence, and then claiming that Black lives matter.”

Lemon said, “The Black Lives Matter movement was started because it was talking about police brutality. If you want an All Black Lives Matter movement that talks about gun violence in communities, including, you know, Black communities, then start that movement with that name. But that’s not what Black Lives Matter is about. It’s not all-encompassing. If someone started a movement that said cancer matters, and then someone comes and says, ‘Why aren’t you talking about HIV?’ It’s not the same thing. We’re talking about cancer. So the Black Lives Matter movement is about police brutality and injustice, in that manner. Not about what’s happening in Black neighborhoods.”

Crews said, “But when you look at the organization, police brutality is not the only thing they are talking about.”

Lemon said, “I know that. I agree. But that’s not what the Black Lives Matter movement is about, Terry. Black lives matter is about police brutality and about criminal justice. It’s not about what happens in communities when it comes to crime, black-on-black crime. People who live near each other, black people, kill each other. Same as whites. Eighty-some percent of white people are killed by white people because of proximity. Same thing with black people. It happens in every single neighborhood. But again, I’m not saying it’s not important that those kids died, but it’s a different movement.”

Crews said, “I understand what you’re saying. I totally understand. It is about police brutality. That should never be accepted. I am not saying that that’s not it. But there’s more there. And when I look, if they have more on their agenda, we need to ask them about what else is on that agenda, other than police brutality. And that’s all I’m doing, questioning. Warning, watching. And if that bothers you, now, that bothers me.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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