People Are Legit Shook After Powerfully Responsible Lemon/Cuomo Segment on Columbus Police Shooting

CNN's Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo discuss the officer-involved shooting death of Ma’Khia Bryant.

If I had simply read the transcript of what transpired between CNN “Tonight” anchor Don Lemon and the network’s “Prime Time” host Chris Cuomo Wednesday night without knowing the names of the participants, I would not have guessed that it was the two of them who put on what was inarguably one of the most powerfully responsible discussions yet surrounding the officer-involved shooting death of Ma’Khia Bryant.

As we previously reported, there were a lot of predictable knee-jerk and, quite frankly, dumb reactions to the Tuesday shooting from many of the Usual Suspects on the left and in the mainstream media.

But Lemon and Cuomo, shockingly enough, were not among them. During the nightly sendoff between their programs, Lemon first talked about how the Ohio case was “tough, it is really, really, really tough.” Then Cuomo, who had previously talked about how people shouldn’t jump to conclusions on the Bryant shooting on his own program, then told viewers why neither he nor Lemon rushed to judge initial reports on what happened as so many others had:

“And the initial reports didn’t seem right, and it was so interesting for me as emotional and personal as the stories are, as someone of color especially Don, you with your background. You are cautious about it, you are saying huh, I want to see this one, I want to see this. Because there’s a lot of emotion, understandably so you get a 16-year- old kid that’s gone.”

While Lemon confirmed the situation was indeed emotional, he also said something I’ve never heard him say – that it was important to be fair and honest in describing what was happening when police arrived onto the scene:

“…. but we’ve got to be fair about what happens when police arrived at scenes.

It is tragic that it’s a 16-year-old girl, just it is tragic that it’s a 13-year-old in Chicago. When police are chasing people, they don’t know how old they are. And they don’t run and say how old are you, I’m 13, you know? My mom let me but you don’t know that. Or I’m 16. When they roll up on the scene, they see people tussling around, someone has a knife and their job is to protect and serve.

Every life on that scene, and if they see someone who is in the process of taking a life, what is that decision — what decision that do they have to make? And I know that people say well, you know, you could do this you could do that. Tasers don’t work the way guns work.”

What followed was a refreshingly frank exchange about what happened, the position the police were put in, and how their reaction — while the end result was the death of a teenager — was one where they had no choice. Watch the clips below, courtesy of Newsbusters news analyst Nick Fondacaro:

Longtime critics of Cuomo and Lemon were pleasantly surprised at their back and forth, and said so on the Twitter machine (my comments will follow):

I’m one of those media critics who doesn’t hand out cookies to media figures for simply doing the jobs they are supposed to do (responsible reporting) rather than stirring the pot and fanning the flames just for clicks and RTs and views. But I also know that there are many in the media (including Lemon, Cuomo, and others at CNN) who have irresponsibly gaslit readers and viewers for months about the violent Antifa/BLM-led anti-police riots to the point where honest conversations about the situations police often find themselves in are considered borderline heresy.

That simply has to change, and the change first starts with the people who engage in the gaslighting the most. The dialogue around officer-involved deaths in this country has got to cool down, the rhetoric less heated and accusatorial. Because not only do bad decisions oftentimes stem from it, but those decisions can have the disastrous effect of leaving vulnerable communities even more unsafe and also leaving officers demoralized. That exact situation has played out with precision in Minneapolis, which saw a 21% rise in violent crime last year.

As crazy as it sounds, if it takes Lemon and Cuomo being the voices of reason to cut through and shut down some of the inflammatory and insane commentary we’re seeing from many on the left on this topic, I’ll take it. That doesn’t mean they’re not going to say something stupid or irresponsible the next day, but I’m willing to give a little credit here if it means the beginning of a much-needed shift in tone on officer-involved shootings.

Related –>> Columbus, OH Police Shooting: What the Columbus PD Got Right