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It Only Took Elon 5 Seconds to Cut Don Lemon Down to Size, Say What We've All Thought for Years

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There’s a dark bit of humor to be found in the idea that Don Lemon is being censored by Elon Musk.

Lemon, as you might have heard, was in negotiations for a contract to broadcast on X — formerly known as Twitter — when he conducted an interview with the brand’s owner, Musk. It was predictably contentious, if not necessarily nasty on Elon’s side. But when the contract didn’t coalesce as expected, the establishment media accused Musk of censorship.

Never mind the fact that, as both Musk and the platform explained, Lemon was free to post whatever he wanted and that the deal fell apart primarily because Lemon wanted to do exactly what he had done at CNN under former boss Jeff Zucker, just on social media.

That wouldn’t fly on X, nor would Lemon’s exorbitant reported contract demands, which included a Tesla Cybertruck and other perks, in addition to a seven-figure salary and an equity stake in the platform.

But suddenly Lemon was a victim of censorship.

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Ironic, then, given that Lemon was the one who was pushing for censorship during the interview, so much so that Musk called him out for it — telling the former CNN host that “you desperately want censorship … you want censorship so bad, you can taste it.”

The exchange came during a push by Lemon for “content moderation” — which, in liberal-speak, is a code word for pruning opinions leftists don’t like.

Lemon began the interview with Musk by asking the mega-billionaire if, should Musk and X moderate content more, he wouldn’t have to answer questions about theories like the so-called “Great Replacement” conspiracy or other outré topics.

“I don’t have to answer questions from reporters, Don,” Musk said. “The only reason I’m doing this interview is because you’re on the X platform and you asked for it. Otherwise, I would not do this interview.”

Is Elon right? Is censorship the number one thing the leftist media wants?

Well, that didn’t work out as planned. Musk went on to respond that there were already mechanisms in place to deal with these sorts of things, like the community notes function.

Lemon continued to press the issue, pointing out Musk’s not-inaccurate quote that content moderation (at least how the left wants it practiced) is a “digital chastity belt” and asking if he thought he had “some responsibility to moderate hate speech on the platform.”

Saying one does, of course, is a gateway to speech of any disfavored sort quickly becoming “hate speech” and the left banging on about how the platform isn’t really living up to its standards of moderation. (For example, leftists still don’t think even other Big Tech companies moderate with due stringency — and too much is never enough for them.)

Lemon went on to say that “we don’t agree on this.”

“Yes, you want censorship and I don’t,” Musk responded.

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“No, I don’t want censorship,” Lemon responded. “I want responibility.”

“You desperately want censorship,” Musk said. “You want censorship so bad, you can taste it.”

It was a handful of words that took only five seconds to speak. But it summed up what conservatives have been thinking for years about leftist plans to control freedom of speech.



After the interview, Lemon probably didn’t do himself any favors by going on his old network to whine about what he perceived as a lack of content moderation on Twitter.

“It didn’t matter that he retweeted things that were offensive to people,” Lemon said.

Alas, Lemon isn’t going to get his old job back — and while CNN might allow him to appear in order to form a cudgel against X for being a platform where one can still find unpopular opinions, CNN isn’t going to pay him. Neither is Musk.

I’m sure he can find a way to make it in the world, given the size of his previous contract and what he thought he could ask for from the platform formerly known as Twitter, but the old rules don’t apply out in the world of social media, where a broad range of opinions can be heard so long as Big Tech doesn’t squelch speech.

As for a return to the old world of the walled garden, well, I suppose there’s always joining his buddy Chris Cuomo at NewsNation, but that’s really about it.

Best of luck, Don.


This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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