Lemon Argues Prayer Didn’t Stop Sutherland Springs, Hints Irrelevant Gun Control Would Have

CNN Tonight host Don Lemon went on a nearly-four-minute-long commentary on Monday emphasizing that he’s not “not anti-thoughts and prayers,” but demanded Congress defeat the NRA and pass gun control measures that wouldn’t have stopped Sunday’s Sutherland Springs church shooting.

“[P]lease pay attention if you're doing something or whatever. I really want your attention this evening and with an open mind. How many more times are we going to have to do this? Mourn with people we don't know but meet under the most horrific circumstances, their loved ones’ lives snuffed out in an instant for no good reason,” Lemon began.

 

 

Lemon read a few tweets from Republicans following the massacre and then mocked them by repeatedly muttering “thoughts and prayers” under this breath. Somehow, he then argued: “Don't get me wrong. Prayers are important. They really are. But can we just be honest for a moment and this is not about religion, it's not about politics. Democrats do it too.”

The CNN host claimed that this is “not about religion” and he’s “not anti-thoughts and prayers by any means” due to his upbringing in the “very religious, deep south, a Baptist who went to a Catholic schools where we prayed at least four times a day, plus Mass on Fridays and church on Sundays, sometimes twice.” 

From there, Lemon seemed to discount the notion that prayers aren’t always answered in how one expects and that there’s evil in the world when he bemoaned how “thoughts and prayers” didn’t stop the shooter.

<<< Please support MRC's NewsBusters team with a tax-deductible contribution today. >>>

“Thoughts and prayers did not stop an oversight from the justice system which enabled a guy who attacked his stepson and assaulted his wife from getting a gun. Thoughts and prayers didn't stop a troubled person from buying assault-grade weapons that took the lives of 26 people in an instant,” he added. 

Lemon could have stopped there because that’s exactly what happened in that a 1996 law about domestic violence offenders wasn’t followed by Air Force personnel. Plain and simple. If the federal bureaucracy would have followed a law on the books, the shooter’s name would have been in a federal database and thus banned from buying/owning firearms.

Of course, that’s not what Lemon did. He continued by claiming that “[t]his is not at all about the Second Amendment or taking guns out of the hands of responsible gun owners.” 

“I am a firm believer in the Second Amendment. I'll say that again. I am firm believer in the Second Amendment. I grew up with hunters, family members, friends, all around me. Louisiana it's all about hunting. I also think responsible adults should be able to protect their homes, their property and themselves,” Lemon stated. 

If you’ve ever read someone going this far to make clear that you’re not for gun control, here’s a spoiler alert of sorts: This means they’re for gun control.

And sure enough, Lemon went on to float the very notion that he just claimed he’s not advocating for:

But think about this. How many guns and of what caliber does one person need? Does a civilian really need an arsenal? Does a civilian really need body armor? Those are good questions that we should all be asking. Maybe you think they should, but we should at least be asking those questions. Those are the questions our leaders should be debating. Our leaders should be leading, not following. 

With all that’s known about the gunman, it’s doubtful that a ban on body armor or certain guns would have stopped someone hellbent on causing harm.

As a reminder, this is the same CNN host that melted down after President Trump’s Phoenix rally and, without having any experience in psychology, declared that Trump is mentally ill.

In a cheap shot at the National Rifle Association (even though the hero who shot the gunman was a former NRA instructor), Lemon urged elected officials to do what’s best for “their constituents even when it is unpopular” by “stand[ing] up to lobbyists.”

“Yes, thoughts and prayers are important. So tonight, I hope you will join me in praying that our leaders will actually do something of substance and action this time that precludes another thoughts and prayers moment. Remember this. Faith without works is dead,” Lemon concluded.

If you’ve made it to the bottom of this post and still believe that Lemon is a neutral journalist, I don’t know what to tell you. 

Lemon’s gun control proclamation was brought to you by CNN Tonight advertisers LoanDepot.com, Rent the Runway, Progressive, and Volvo.

Here’s the relevant transcript from November 6's CNN Tonight with Don Lemon:

CNN Tonight with Don Lemon
November 6, 2017
10:00 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Don’s Take; Thoughts and Prayers Are Important, But Our Leaders Need to Take Action]

DON LEMON: Can I — please pay attention if you're doing something or whatever. I really want your attention this evening and with an open mind. How many more times are we going to have to do this? Mourn with people we don't know but meet under the most horrific circumstances, their loved ones’ lives snuffed out in an instant for no good reason? How many times are we going to look up at the TV and see and hear people grieving, sobbing their hearts out in front of the world — for the whole world to see and before we even know the full story the responses from our leaders are sadly as familiar as the details of the shootings. 

Cases in point, Paul Ryan: “Reports out of Texas are devastating. The people of Sutherland Springs need our prayers right now.” Vice President Pence, in part, “Karen & I send prayers to victims and their families in Texas.” John Cornyn, “Truly heartbreaking news in #Sutherland Springs. Please say a prayer for First Baptist congregation, first responders & community there.” Joe Manchin who tried and failed to pass bipartisan gun measures after the Sandy Hook massacre said this: “Gail & I are broken, heartbroken to learn of the shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Sending prayers from West Virginia.” Ted Cruz: “Keeping all harmed in Sutherland Springs in our prayers and grateful for our brave first responders on the scene.” Thoughts and prayers, thoughts and prayers, thoughts and prayers. Don't get me wrong. Prayers are important. They really are. But can we just be honest for a moment and this is not about religion, it's not about politics. Democrats do it too. 

President Obama has responded similarly in other shootings and it's not about religion. As I said I'm not anti-thoughts and prayers by any means. I grew up in a very, a very religious, deep south, a Baptist who went to a Catholic schools where we prayed at least four times a day, plus Mass on Fridays and church on Sundays, sometimes twice. So spare me the anti-religion tweets. You can keep them. I won't even read them. I don't care. These God-fearing Christians were in church. They were already praying. Thoughts and prayers did not stop an oversight from the justice system which enabled a guy who attacked his stepson and assaulted his wife from getting a gun. Thoughts and prayers didn't stop a troubled person from buying assault-grade weapons that took the lives of 26 people in an instant and please don't get me wrong. This is not at all about the Second Amendment or taking guns out of the hands of responsible gun owners. 

I am a firm believer in the Second Amendment. I'll say that again. I am firm believer in the Second Amendment. I grew up with hunters, family members, friends, all around me. Louisiana it's all about hunting. I also think responsible adults should be able to protect their homes, their property and themselves. But think about this. How many guns and of what caliber does one person need? Does a civilian really need an arsenal? Does a civilian really need body armor? Those are good questions that we should all be asking. Maybe you think they should, but we should at least be asking those questions. Those are the questions our leaders should be debating. Our leaders should be leading, not following. And not afraid to be honest with their constituents even when it is unpopular, especially when really it is the constituents' lives that are at stake. And they are. Leaders stand up to lobbyists. Yes, thoughts and prayers are important. So tonight, I hope you will join me in praying that our leaders will actually do something of substance and action this time that precludes another thoughts and prayers moment. Remember this. Faith without works is dead. 


Please support NewsBusters today! (a 501c3 non-profit production of the Media Research Center)

DONATE
CyberAlerts Crime Guns Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats CNN CNN Tonight Video NRA Paul Ryan Don Lemon Mike Pence Ted Cruz John Cornyn
Curtis Houck's picture