Don Lemon calls out Hollywood stars by name during protest coverage

CNN anchor urges stars like Oprah, Diddy and Tracee Ellis Ross to get out of their mansions and stop 'worrying about your reputation and brand'

Don Lemon, anchor on CNN’s “CNN Tonight with Don Lemon.” (Photo: CNN)

CNN anchor Don Lemon apparently has had enough of Hollywood’s silence on the string of demonstrations across the country in protest of George Floyd‘s death and ongoing police brutality against Black Americans.

On Saturday night while covering the intense protests in cities like Minneapolis, where Floyd was killed, New York City and Los Angeles — the home of Hollywood’s biggest names — Lemon questioned why so few celebrities have publicly come out to say something.

“What about Hollywood?” asked Lemon who said that Tinseltown was “strangely quiet.”

READ MORE: Minnesota residents clean up after George Floyd protests

“I see them on Twitter saying, ‘oh, I’m loving what Don’s doing’ … but they got to do more than that. Especially Black celebrities and Black leaders — and white celebrities,” Lemon said as CNN’s news feed displayed a Starbucks store in Los Angeles set ablaze.

“Why aren’t they helping these young people? These young people are out there standing on the platform … the edge of the abyss by themselves.

“Yes I’m calling you out. You can be mad at me all you want,” he added. “You’re sitting there and you’re watching TV and you’re bitching about it and you’re saying, ‘oh my god, I can’t believe this is happening. What’s going on?'”

Getting more personal, Lemon said “stop texting me and asking me, ‘oh my god, Don, what is happening to our country?’ Get on television and do something and help these young people instead of sitting in your mansions and doing nothing and have some moral courage and stop worrying about your reputation and your brand.”

Apparently not through with his tough-love message to his celebrity friends, Lemon decided to go one step further by calling out a few celebrities by name.

READ MORE: White women in Louisville line up to form human shield to protect Black protesters 

“By me calling out your name, it doesn’t mean I’m calling you out. It means I love you, Ellen [DeGeneres]. It means I love you, Oprah,” he said, adding “and I know they give millions of dollars to charity every year.”

Clarifying why he was calling them out, Lemon said the country needs their “visibility in helping to speak out for these young kids. And you may be doing something that I don’t know about, and if you are then I apologize.”

The always vocal journalist then went on to drop a few more names from Hollywood who he’d like to see step up.

“I want to see you Tracee Ellis Ross. I want to see you Tyler Perry. I want to see you Drake. I want to see you my friend, Anthony Anderson. I love you … I want to see you Diddy. I want to see you Jane Fonda, who I love and respect,” said Lemon.

READ MORE: Don Lemon slams Trump over George Floyd: no one wants to hear from you

Making his point clearer, Lemon pointed that even Beyoncé — arguably the most famous person in the world — issued a statement on George Floyd’s death and urged for people to take action through a petition.

“Beyoncé released a message, you can’t?” he said.

Within minutes, Don Lemon’s name became a trending topic on Twitter — largely due to thousands of tweets praising him for his candor.

See some of the reactions below.

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