Cuomo Argues in Favor of Allowing the Banning of MAGA Hat Wearers from Businesses

The Media Research Center has extensively documented CNN’s hatred for Trump supporters over the last few years. But during Thursday’s Prime Time, host Chris Cuomo made a serious argument in support for allowing businesses to ban people wearing MAGA hats under the auspices of it being triggering. If that wasn’t bad enough, CNN Tonight host Don Lemon justified applying prejudices against those wearing the hats as well.

The impetus for Cuomo’s argument a “chef in San Mateo, California saying ‘you wear that hat into my place you're not getting service.’” According to Cuomo, the concern was the “legality and then the appropriateness” of banning MAGA hat wearers. And “Cuomo’s [kangaroo] court” found the chef in the right on both fronts.

After Lemon pointed out that it was legal to ban Trump supporters in hats, Cuomo entered a rhetorical debate with himself:

You can refuse service. You know, no shirt no shoes no service. Now you’d have a counter First Amendment argument. You’re chilling my rights. It’s a private place. Well then, how is this any different than the baker with the cake? Well, that was about refusing service to a group of people that should be a protected class.

And unless you can argue that Trump supporters should be a protected class. I don't think you have much of an argument on that,” he scoffed.

Once again, Cuomo’s version of history was divorced from reality. Masterpiece Cakeshop owner Jack Phillips’s objection to baking a wedding cake for a gay couple was rooted in his religious beliefs. Phillips had said numerous times in the past that if the couple wanted to buy other baked goods, he was happy to serve them. The Supreme Court had even upheld his stance, partially. A U.S. District Court recently ruled that he could sue the state of Colorado for anti-religious hostility.

 

 

And while Cuomo scoffed at the idea of making Trump supporters a “protected class,” in Washington, D.C. political beliefs were protected under the law. It’s illegal in DC to refuse service based on someone’s politics.

Moving on to defending the “appropriateness” of banning Trump supporters, he argued that the hat “triggered” people and was equivalent to wearing a shirt that said, “I hate black people.” “I think the more appropriate analogy to say is, if people were wearing shirts that said ‘I hate black people,’ would he be okay to say don't come into my place with that,” he wondered.

Lemon agreed with his colleague and reiterated a previous point that “your clothing tells a story about who you are, what you think about, and what you represent.” From there, he essentially justified people applying their prejudices to those wearing the hats:

If you're going to wear that hat, that hat means everything from, I would say the beginning of the campaign, maybe before. Maybe that hat means the Central Park five to people. Maybe it means birtherism to people. Maybe it means Mexicans are rapists to people. And so you cannot erase those things from the story of that hat…

“It just can't be about what you want it to be about. There are symbols and things in society that you have to take as a whole,” he proclaimed. So according to Lemon, people who wear MAGA hats should expect to be a target of hatred and expect people to assume the worst about them. This is CNN.

The transcript is below, click expand to read:

CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time
January 31, 2019
9:46:43 p.m. Eastern

CHRIS CUOMO: It's a hat with four words on it but they can mean a lot to people. I’m talking about the President's MAGA hat. Now we hear a chef in San Mateo, California saying ‘you wear that hat into my place you're not getting service’. He tweeted stuff like this saying, “MAGA hats are like white hoods except stupider because you can see exactly who is wearing them”. Now he is taking down some of the tweets and there are reports the chef is getting threats. What's right here? What's wrong? What matters. Let's bring in D. lemon. How do you see it?

(…)

DON LEMON: Okay. So here's how I see it. I think people should be able to wear whatever they want, right? I don't like banning. I don't like boycotting. I don't like people getting fired for making just what's honest mistakes. But I do say -- your clothing tells a story and if you put certain symbols in your home or in front of your house, whatever, things tell stories. And you should be aware of the entire story that they tell, not just the little part of it that you want to be told. But I don't like the idea of banning someone for wearing a hat. But that hat, as we have said, it's no secret, I told you about how I feel and people perceive – many people perceive that hat.

CUOMO: Right. So, you have the legality and then the appropriateness, right?

LEMON: It's legal, right? You're the attorney.

CUOMO: You can refuse service. You know, no shirt no shoes no service. Now you’d have a counter first amendment argument. You’re chilling my rights. It’s a private place. Well then, how is this any different than the baker with the cake? Well, that was about refusing service to a group of people that should be a protected class. And unless you can argue that Trump supporters should be a protected class. I don't think you have much of an argument on that.

So, let's say this isn't so much about whether he has the right, it's about whether or not it is right. And here's my problem on this issue. Ordinarily, I go down the line, look, be bigger than that. But I don't want to fall into the trap of underselling the significance of the trigger of the expression to people. I think the more appropriate analogy to say is, if people were wearing shirts that said “I hate black people”, would he be okay to say don't come into my place with that?

LEMON: Yes.

CUOM: And I think that most people would be like, “yeah”. That's how people like him see the MAGA hat. So, does that make it okay? I think that's the right question?

LEMON: Well, the thing is, should you? Just because yes, that, but just because you have the right, does it mean that you should?

CUOMO: No. Absolutely not.

LEMON: And should you be aware-- Again, your clothing tells a story about who you are, what you think about, and what you represent. And also, life is not in a vacuum. That hat means a lot of things. If you're going to wear that hat, that hat means everything from, I would say the beginning of the campaign, maybe before. Maybe that hat means the Central Park five to people. Maybe it means birtherism to people. Maybe it means Mexicans are rapists to people. And so you cannot erase those things from the story of that hat and say, “well, I'm just wearing it because I want stronger immigration”. Well, a lot of people want stronger immigration. It just can't be about what you want it to be about. There are symbols and things in society that you have to take as a whole.

CUOMO: All right.

LEMON: So I don't like it. I don't think it should be banned, but I understand why. And also the same reason -- I know you have to go, but the same reason they stopped putting cable news on in some gyms, in some places, because to many people were fighting.

(…)

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