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‘No one to blame but ourselves’: Don Lemon explains why gun violence is ‘a sickness that has infected the country’

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Don Lemon

CNN’s Don Lemon on Wednesday delivered an emotional monologue following a deadly mass shooting at a Florida high school that killed 17 people.

“This is a sickness that has infected the country, unchecked and unfettered gun violence.” Lemon told viewers. “Today, 17 lives are over. Seventeen families are torn apart. Parents who sent their kids to school this morning—imagine that, many people send their kids to school—just like they’ve done every other day for years. They trusted their kids would be safe. Teachers went to work this morning, trusted they’s be safe in their space, in their work environment. The way we all should be safe in our work environments, every day, everywhere in our schools. Our churches, our offices at concerts, at nightclubs. Do you feel safe tonight?”

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“Every single one of us is just playing the odds at this point,” he continued. “The odds that, in a country of 325 million souls, that we won’t be the ones who get hit by the next bullets that start flying. We won’t be the one that gets that phone call about someone you love who did. Your son, your daughter, your brother, your sister, your spouse, or your parent, even a friend. Anyone you know. The phone call that changes your life.”

“Is this really who we want to be?” Lemon asked. “A country where anybody, at any time, could be shot to death. And then when a bunch of people are killed and lives are shattered, we are sad and maybe angry, and then we forget, and we move on, until the next time, with the tragedy remaining in the headlines for even a shorter time than it did before.”

“This is about lives,” Lemon said. “The lives of all Americans. We need to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people.”

Referencing arguments that it’s “too soon” to talk about gun control in the immediate aftermath of a mass shooting, Lemon argued “the day to talk about it was weeks, months, years, or decades ago.”

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“And yes, of course, we also need to make mental health a priority in this country,” Lemon argued. “But guess what, we can do both. we can do both of those things at the same time. If we don’t, we have no one to blame but ourselves. This is America, people. Don’t forget that. I know that we are better than this.”

Watch below:

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Psychoanalyst Justin Frank on why Trump ‘hates reality’ and must be ‘quarantined’

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Donald Trump is a living, breathing national emergency. Our president has repeatedly encouraged violence against his perceived enemies — and at least some of his supporters are following his lead. These are not isolated incidents. There are dozens of court cases where Donald Trump has been cited for "inspiring" acts of violence and other crimes. There are also the most odious examples such as the recent white supremacist terror attack in El Paso in which the alleged mass murderer wrote an online "manifesto" that almost verbatim channeled Trump's threatening rhetoric towards nonwhite people.

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Like a fox — how a TV news channel is tearing America apart

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A little over 20 years ago, Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes concocted a profitable way to tap into the white supremacist ideology still bubbling below America’s surface.

They started a “news” network that, instead of providing actual news, gave white, conservative viewers the news they wanted to hear: that they, their families, and their values were under attack by minorities, gays, women, liberals, socialists, Muslims, atheists, the media, etc. — and therefore their biases were justified.

It’s been a lucrative strategy. However, just making a buck wasn’t enough for them. They also wanted to shape the fortunes of the country they were dividing. Here, too, they had tremendous success.

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Is Trump’s love affair with Fox News fading?

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Last month after Donald Trump watched Fox News lob what he called "softball questions" at a Democratic lawmaker, the US president delivered a crisp smackdown of his favorite network: "Fox sure ain't what it used to be."

After years of often fawning coverage by Fox, particularly from its pro-Trump anchors like Sean Hannity, the commander in chief appears to be tilting his media gaze toward a younger, more right-wing rival, cable outfit One America News Network (OANN).

The small upstart broadcaster was launched only recently, in 2013, by technology millionaire Robert Herring, who sought a more conservative alternative to mainstream media behemoths like CNN.

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