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Silence is Not an Option

Author: CNN

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America is in crisis right now. A lot of people want to help, but have no idea where to start. In our new podcast, we’re going to dig deep into the reality of being Black and brown in America, and explore what you can do to help find a path forward. We’ll have tough conversations with activists, artists, and thinkers about our nation’s deep racial divide. As we look for meaningful and lasting solutions, there is a lot to learn and unlearn. 

These conversations are going to be challenging—even uncomfortable—but they’re important. Because this time, we get to rebuild America together. 

Hosted by Don Lemon.
18 Episodes
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Black to the Future

Black to the Future

2020-11-1929:462

A record number of Black candidates ran for office this year, representing not only their constituencies, but also the diversity of perspectives that exist among Black Americans. Don talks to two newly elected representatives, Mondaire Jones (D-New York) and Cori Bush (D-Missouri), about their platforms, their strategies for Congress, and the future of Black politics.  To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Black Women Did That

Black Women Did That

2020-11-1223:333

Black women are largely responsible for electing America’s next president. They have been one of the Democratic party’s most reliable voting blocs for a long time. Why? Don talks with LaTosha Brown, co-founder of Black Voters Matter, about how their votes were earned in the 2020 election. Also, Florida Democratic Rep. Frederica Wilson discusses the excitement surrounding VP-elect Kamala Harris and her affiliation with Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated (AKA). To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Blaxit

Blaxit

2020-10-2936:475

Why stay where you’re not wanted? Some Black Americans are thinking about moving abroad to escape centuries of racial oppression and marginalization. Historian Kevin Gaines shares the long history behind this phenomenon. Don also speaks with author Tiffanie Drayton about her move from the U.S. to Trinidad and Tobago and why she considers herself a refugee. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Why is still so hard for Black communities to vote in this country? Massive early voter turnout has led to hours-long waiting lines, and Black and other voters of color can expect to wait the longest. Voter protection specialist Josh Levin says that even after decades of legal battles over voting rights, communities of color consistently encounter barriers. Don also speaks with Carol Anderson, author and professor of African American Studies at Emory University. She argues that modern suppression tactics are no different than those of the Jim Crow era. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
If injustice occurs in America no matter who is leading the country, is voting really as powerful as we say it is? Election day is so close, yet not everyone is convinced that voting will lead to meaningful progress. Activist Daud Mumin argues that we need more than just incremental change. And Don speaks with Black Voters Matter co-founder LaTosha Brown about whether elections are our most effective tool. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
School is back in session as protests and calls for racial justice continue across America. So how should parents and teachers talk to kids about this national reckoning? Don speaks with clinical psychologist and race relations expert, Beverly Daniel Tatum, PhD, about the right time talk to kids about racism and how to help them navigate a multiracial society. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
The Color of Love

The Color of Love

2020-08-2735:1010

Amidst a summer of unrest and calls for social justice, Don talks with host of CNN's United Shades of America W. Kamau Bell about matters of the heart. More than five decades have passed since the US Supreme court protected interracial marriage in America. Both men are in committed relationships with partners of a different race, and they reflect on the conflict and comfort that can be found with a loved one during a national reckoning on race. Don takes listeners into his home to share a special conversation with his fiancé, Tim. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
As the 2020 presidential election approaches, environmental protections, natural resource management and climate change are a big part of the conversation. Protecting the environment goes way beyond fuel efficient cars and polar bears, it also means improving living conditions for communities of color who often bear the brunt of environmental decline. Don talks to environmental justice advocate, Mustafa Santiago Ali about the environmental justice movement and how it’s tied to the larger racial reckoning happening today. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
The NBA and Major League Baseball have restarted their seasons and NFL training camps are underway. As professional leagues and college teams navigate how to play safely during a pandemic, they are also confronting racial justice issues that plague American sports. Don talks to sports journalist William C. Rhoden about Black athletes, activism, and how much still needs to be done. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Lately everyone has been talking about race, but Pulitzer Prize-winner Isabel Wilkerson wants us to look at caste as well. We may associate that strict social hierarchy with India, but Wilkerson argues it has been present in the U.S. for over 400 years. She talks with Don about her new book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, and why she thinks race is just one part of a larger system that determines who is valued and who is dispensable in American society. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Reimagining the Police

Reimagining the Police

2020-07-3032:358

As protests against police brutality continue across the country, there are calls to reform, defund, and even abolish the police. So, what does it all mean? Don talks to Newark Mayor Ras Baraka about the reforms he’s implementing in a city with a long history of tension between the police and its Black community. Gwen Carr reflects on the years since the death of her son, Eric Garner and Professor Chenjerai Kumanyika provides important  context about the history of policing in the United States. Let us know what you think of the show! Take a short survey at cnn.com/silence To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Finding Common Ground

Finding Common Ground

2020-07-2332:209

In the wake of antisemitic comments from prominent Black athletes and entertainers, we examine the strong alliances and deeply ingrained tensions between the Black and Jewish communities. How does their solidarity during the 1960s civil rights movement inform these relationships today? Don talks to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who recently penned an article on this topic, as well as historian Marc Dollinger and political strategist Ginna Green. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Defining What Matters

Defining What Matters

2020-07-1629:1613

When racial tensions flare, people often call for a conversation about race. But do we all share the same definition of racism? Don speaks with recent college graduate, Kennedy Mitchum about changing the definition of racism.  Linguist, John McWhorter explains how words succeed and fail at leading to change. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Monumental Conversations

Monumental Conversations

2020-07-0926:5615

Confederate statues and symbols are being removed all over the country. This is long overdue for some, while others say that it’s a dangerous effort to erase history. Don speaks with the descendants of a Confederate general whose statue was recently toppled as they come to grips with their family's complicated family legacy. He also gets insights from author and political analyst Jared Yates Sexton who sheds light on the history of the Confederacy you didn't learn in grade school. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Schooling the System

Schooling the System

2020-07-0225:0211

It’s been over 60 years since the Supreme Court ruled that racial segregation in public schools was unconstitutional. But in 2020, some classrooms are still pretty segregated. Don reflects on his own educational journey and speaks with Michigan State University’s Professor Sheneka Williams about the state of American schools. How far have we really come since Brown v. Board of Education, and how can we all take part in fixing the system? To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
In the midst of protests for racial justice and calls for police reform and defunding, why should we care about the movies? Well, representation matters and the media we consume influences the way we view ourselves and each other. HBO Max recently pulled "Gone with the Wind" from its film library but just added it back online, with a new introduction addressing the controversial racial depictions. Don shares a love of classic film with his mom, so in this episode, they talk about their conflicted reactions to historical Black representation on the screen. You'll also hear from Turner Classic Movies host Jacqueline Stewart, who presented that new introduction to "Gone with the Wind.” She explains why context is key when reexamining controversial classics. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
We live in a society where it's no longer enough to simply not be racist—we must proactively choose to be antiracist. And that choice means showing up and doing the work, every single day. In this episode, Don talks with Professor Ibram X. Kendi and Professor Christopher Petrella about how we got to this moment and what it will require of each of us to build a more inclusive future.  To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Whether you're protesting in the streets or at the voting booth, we all recognize the need to disrupt generations of racism in our country. Knowing what to do is harder. Each week, Don Lemon will talk with experts, activists, and artists to help us figure out how to move forward, together. Because no matter how you choose to engage, silence is not an option. To learn more about how CNN protects listener privacy, visit cnn.com/privacy
Comments (210)

J. B.

this was an amazing episode. The fact that the over hate, racism, and strain put on minority people so bad that they leave to live somewhere else and still lament the decision and miss family is sad. Those who tell people to leave if they don't like this country win when this happens and the fact that these people are the victims is sad. We are less strong when we lose so many strong people and talent.

Oct 30th
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Kem Goodwin

we are asking if Donald Trump can produce a negative test but what no one is talking about is where is the positive test show me that you tested positive

Oct 25th
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Kem Goodwin

I would love to know where is the first lady thought this pandemic if we are rounding the corner not only that where is Young trump don't know his name but he was infected to

Oct 25th
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Brian Shaw

To answer your question Mr. Lemon...yes your/our vote will create change in America.

Oct 15th
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Brian Shaw

We need Police reform, not defunding but new training and vetting officers with the right Psychological blue print to be a PEACE officer. Dallas Texas, Wolfe City, Texas...White Police officer charged with the murder of 31 year old Johnathan Price, personal trainer, and a Black man. Price was breaking up a fight between a couple at a gas station, Sheriff Shaun Lucas arrives and immediately confronts Price, tases him then fatally shoots him...big mistake!

Oct 6th
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Brian Shaw

I have been dealing with this issue for 55 years, the times have changed and progress (some); however, I have never seen so many white people engaged in a movement, BLM, for progress in those 55 years! Bless you all!

Sep 11th
Reply (2)

Ricky Paul Mitchell Jr.

I love this podcast

Sep 11th
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Charles Uwi

Don, this is the best season finale. You had a powerful and rich conversation with Dr. Tatum. I hope you will be back soon.

Sep 10th
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Brian Shaw

Remember Anthony Huber! because race matters!

Aug 27th
Reply (6)

Pat Walker

Great information.

Aug 22nd
Reply (1)

Brian Shaw

Even as we think about today, looking at Baseball, Football, Basketball, Track, Golf, Tennis...etc. The dynamic of Slavery exists in the format of: Managers, HeadCoaches, Owners, predominated by white men/women. Black players, paid; and in some cases years back, free Labor!

Aug 13th
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Brian Shaw

As you get older, Baseball, Basketball, Football and many other sports take on a different "hue". As an African/Indian American male in my 60's, sports changes over decades or half centuries. What we thought was important at the time is not so important now! Race, the upcoming election, BLM movement, financial security threats from this administration with payroll tax cuts which will affect Social Security. If my check is being affected by partisan politics; I don't have time to watch football. Been dealing with Race since the '50s...we tried to separate in this country and when we did, we built (freed African Americans from slavery), 15 townships across America and they were burned to the ground and murdered our ancestors, by vigilante whites. One day in THIS country hopefully white folk will be willing to share the spoils of their victory in stealing this land called America.

Aug 13th
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Skyler D

I don't see the link to the survey that was referenced. Really enjoying the conversations though.

Aug 7th
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Brian Shaw

I will never understand why individuals on these Podcasts condemn Don Lemon for introducing dialogue to stimulate conversations and ideology...non of us know everything about all the issues before us. Let's stop the name calling and foul language and just communicate with each other. Thanks Don Lemon.

Aug 3rd
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Brian Shaw

Wow...thank you the speaker from the Jewish community, I knew something happened after WWII, now I know, and I am a part of that history, my father was in the Navy in 1945 when the explosion in Port Chicago, California happened, we then moved to a city named Pittsburg, California and lived in an all Black community. Thank you Don and Kareem for the history lesson about Black folk and Jewish community and " The Brothers at Arms, the 716th".

Jul 24th
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April Franklin

Mr. Lemon, thank you for this series. It is long overdue. I wish you much success.

Jul 21st
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Glenn Roberts

Lemon and cuomo are the most stupid morons in media today. If they had half a brain it would lonely. Maybe they could marry their cousin Rachel madcow and create a super libtard.

Jul 20th
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Jim Buchanan

I keep deleting this propaganda from my library and it keeps getting added back. Get this trash off my feed!

Jul 18th
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Ace

I couldn’t get through any more of the McWhorter interview after his handwavey response to the anti-racism question. Must have been a tough one.

Jul 16th
Reply

Joe Franzese

Truely American privlage.

Jul 16th
Reply
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