Joe Concha, The Hill, August 29, 2018
CNN’s Don Lemon on Tuesday appeared to defend Antifa Tuesday night, praising the group as “fighting racist fascists” while adding “no organization is perfect” in acknowledging the group’s violent past on his primetime program.
“It says it right in the name: Antifa. Anti-fascism, which is what they were there fighting,” Lemon said in reference to clashes between neo-Nazis and Antifa members in Charlottesville, Va., in August 2017.
“Listen, no organization is perfect. There was some violence. No one condones violence, but there were different reasons for Antifa and for these neo-Nazis to be there,” Lemon continued. “One, racists, fascists, the other group, fighting racist fascists. There is a distinction there.”
Antifa has been involved in an altercation with NBC News reporter Cal Perry.
“There’s violence. When you look at Antifa and you look at some of these groups — these are violent people,” Trump said.
CNN chief legal analyst Jeffery Toobin said Trump’s criticism of Antifa is an “appeal to racism” while stating the group “is widely perceived as an African-American organization.”
“Antifa is widely perceived as an African-American organization and this is just part of the same story of LeBron James and Don Lemon and Maxine Waters and the NFL players and the UCLA basketball players,” Toobin added.