Recently demoted CNN host Don Lemon was caught like a deer in the headlights Monday night when he asked British royal commentator Hillary Fordwich whether the British royal family should pay reparations, claiming that some in the United Kingdom “want to be paid back.”
“England is facing rising costs of living, a living crisis, austerity budget cuts, and so on. And then you have those who are asking for reparations for colonialism, and they’re wondering, you know, $100 billion, $24 billion here and there, $500 million there,” Lemon explained. “Some people want to be paid back, and members of the public are wondering, ‘Why are we suffering when you are, you know, you have all of this vast wealth?’ Those are legitimate concerns.”
Her response was epic. After initially giving the impression that she agreed with Lemon, she schooled him royally.
“Well, I think you’re right about reparations in terms of if people want it, though, what they need to do is you always need to go back to the beginning of a supply chain,” Fordwich replied. “Where was the beginning of the supply chain? That was in Africa, and when it crossed the entire world, when slavery was taking place, which was the first nation in the world that abolished slavery? The first nation world to abolish it, it was started by William Wilberforce, was the British. In Great Britain, they abolished slavery.”
She continued, “Two thousand naval men died on the high seas trying to stop slavery. Why? Because the African kings were rounding up their own people, they had them on cages waiting in the beaches. No one was running into Africa to get them. And I think you’re totally right.”
The look on Lemon’s face was priceless. Fordwich succeeded in agreeing with him, although for different reasons than he was obviously suggesting. And she wasn’t done with the lesson.