Don Lemon demonstrates 'knockout game' with a black-belt Rabbi

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CNN anchor Don Lemon was put into a quasi-headlock Tuesday after New York City rabbi Gary Moskowitz was invited to join a live segment on the network.

The physical interaction was part of the duo’s demonstration on how citizens can protect themselves from perpetrators of the so-called “knockout game,” who Moskowitz compared to animals.

The game, which has been widely publicized in the media, has identified young black men as cruel assailants who target individuals, Jews in particular, by approaching and punching them on the street.

However, many in the black community have pushed back calling coverage of the incidents racist and suggesting that it gives white America a new reason to profile black men. 

Moskowitz, a former police officer with a black belt in Karate, visually demonstrated self-defense moves to show how Jews, and other alleged victims, can protect themselves from the attackers. In this case, Lemon willingly played the aggressor.

“The issue is … they’re not just attacking Jews theologically,” Moskowitz said. “What they’re doing is, they’re attacking weaker people. It’s very much like the animal kingdom. They’re attacking weaker people. So they attack elderly women, they attack children. And Jewish people, unfortunately, especially in the Orthodox community, are considered weak.”

In the demonstration, Lemon — who was dressed in plainclothes — threw an awkward, high overhand punch as Moskowitz deflected the ‘hit,’ twisted his arm and put him in a vulnerable position.

“Careful,” Lemon said, as he pointed to his face. “This is my livelihood here.”

Watch the clip above and tell us your thoughts below.

Follow Lilly Workneh on Twitter @Lilly_Works