Oh, Great…CNN’s Don Lemon Was Stinking Drunk On The Air Again This Year

How professional.

Clearly, the news media, after its disgraceful performance in 2016, is determined to win back the public’s trust.

I have nothing to add to last year’s post about this. Here’s the main point…

Naturally, lots of tweeters and bloggers thought this was just hilarious and endearing, just as they would probably react with admiration if President Obama turned up stoned for his State of the Union address. The fact that too many Americans are juvenile dummies who don’t care about proper deportment, responsibility and professionalism, and who think impairment is cool, doesn’t excuse a supposed news network from validating their stupidity, or allowing an anchor to debase journalism and to send the message that being smashed on the job is acceptable. Drunks on the job cost businesses millions and occasionally get people killed. Being drunk on the job is always wrong, unless you are a paid drunk. I don’t know any of those.

It does not mitigate this display of vulgarity and lack of responsibility by CNN’s star talking head that he decided to toss all restraint and proper on-the-air conduct to the winds the second he had a colorable excuse. CNN is as irresponsible as Lemon: once he started misbehaving and embarrassing the network (assuming they know what embarrassment in broadcast journalism is, which I now doubt), someone should have ordered him off the air….An ethical news organization would at least suspend Lemon and require an on-air apology. An ethical journalist would, in fact, apologize without being forced. But an ethical journalist wouldn’t get bombed on the job.

27 Comments

Filed under Character, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Dunces, Journalism & Media, Professions

27 responses to “Oh, Great…CNN’s Don Lemon Was Stinking Drunk On The Air Again This Year

  1. zoebrain

    I am reminded of the 1937 Spithead Review, with the memorable commentary by Lieutenant-Commander Thomas Woodrooffe.

    Transcript at http://www.anorak.co.uk/200861/news/the-fleets-lit-up-live-bbc-broadcast-goes-wrong.html/

    The thing is.. it wasn’t new year’s eve. No mitigating circumstances.

  2. Inquiring Mind

    I saw it – live. I saw him get the ear piercing he’s probably going to wonder, “How the hell did I get that?”

    Brooke seemed to be headed to sloshed as well…

    So, for 2015, he made a comment that could be construed as sexual harassment, albeit Kathy Griffin would likely take the Moneypenny option on that from “Goldeneye” – “Someday, you’ll have to make good on your innuendos.”

    2016 had Don Lemon so sloshed he got his ear pierced.

    What’s for the 2017 New Year’s Eve celebration? I’ll take bets…

    • valkygrrl

      I saw it, I think he got sloshed to get his ear pierced. This comes off as odd. I was stone cold sober for every piercing and likely would have been refused service otherwise. Who pierces someone who’s too drunk to give informed consent?

    • Gotta be a face tattoo, like in “The Hangover 2.”
      Why should anyone respect that judgment of journalist who behaves like that in public?
      Why are CNN and its two gay anchors encouraging negative gay stereotypes by allowing Lemon and Anderson Cooper to behave like silly goofs. Cooper allowed himself to be wrapped in aluminum foil.

      You wonder how Trump can get away with undignified tweets? This helps. Lowering cultural standards.

      • “Why are CNN and its two gay anchors encouraging negative gay stereotypes by allowing Lemon and Anderson Cooper to behave like silly goofs. Cooper allowed himself to be wrapped in aluminum foil.”

        What is inherently wrong about the aluminum foil or what is *necessarily* wrong about behaving like a silly goof (provided no other caveats, like being hammered drunk or profanity/vulgarity, are involved)?

        They aren’t reporting news, they are covering *and taking part in* a national moment of frivolity.

        Drunkenness of course doesn’t get a pass…but other goofiness?

        • Ethical reporters are observers, not participants. They are reporting on the celebration, not celebrating. And when I see the heterosexual reporters acting like drunk frat boys, then the gay ceiling-breakers can be unprofessional too without being more than unprofessional. Right now, they are unprofessional and irresponsible. Too many in the public regard gay men as unserious and contemptuous of basic standards of decorum, and this doesn’t help. It’s not much of a sacrifice to ask Lemon and Cooper to behave minimally professionally, since they should anyway. The fact is that the only two journalists I saw last night debasing their profession are gay. Not smart.

          • They aren’t reporting or observing news.

            They are more akin to hosts acting as the point of contact between the celebration on the ground and those who can’t get out. To a considerable degree the camera set-up and their “stage” create a noticeable separation between the viewer and what is viewed. Engaging in some of the “fun” is part of the effect of immersing viewers and breaking down that artificial barrier.

            It isn’t a clinical news bit.

            • If that’s the role, then reporters and anchors shouldn’t be doing it. Dick Clark, yes. Kathy (yechh) Griffin, yes. Tom Brokaw? No.

              • Fair enough. And I really do think that is the role.

                • The blurring of the line between journalists and entertainers is deadly. Journalism is digging its own grave. Why should anyone trust the news analysis of people who act like that in public?

                  • “The blurring of the line between journalists and entertainers is deadly.”

                    Here’s the problem. You conjugate the verb “to blur” in a present on going tense. I’m afraid it can only accurately be conjugated in the past tense, and with a more severe verb than “to blur”.

                    How do you ethically analyze anything after that point regarding the “profession” when it is that far gone?

                    Of Course

                    How about a CGI Alan Thicke to host the New Year’s Eve revelry?

                  • valkygrrl

                    But Anderson Cooper’s career history is as both anchor and entertainer. He hosted a reality show, he does morning shows, he’s been in bits on Saturday Night Live. Tex is right, his job last night was as host and the foil was dumb but not egregious for the job he’d been hired for.

                    Don Lemon shouldn’t have been drunk.

                    • Translation: It’s alright to do it because he’s done it. Tautology. The two roles are incompatable. The key with a journalist is trust. The key with an entertainer is popularity and pleasing the audience. An entertaining journalist is by definition untrustworthy.

                    • valkygrrl

                      Too harsh, too rigid. There isn’t one standard, there’s a spectrum, a situational one, ever watch local morning news shows? The anchor sitting at a desk is serious, the reporter covering the state diary festival sometimes wears a silly cow hat. Sometimes both of them banter.

            • It’s either that,

              OR

              By your assessment have some stuffy reporters in Cronkite glasses sitting there saying “yep, there’s another reveller revelling, seems like the revelling this year is almost as revelric as last year. What do you think, Don?” “I agree, for our viewer’s interest, the stats are as follows: it is 34 degrees outside, 11:37 pm and we are up to 25,675 revellers out here, the wind is coming from north east at 12 knots., back to you Anderson” “Let’s pan the revellers some more and discussing their revelling.”

              OR

              Just don’t have ANY commentators at all and have cameras panning the crowd.

              • OR what you mentioned above.

              • Chris

                I for one object to any objective journalist giving their opinion on whether this year’s revelry was as revelric than last year’s. Such bias is not befitting of the profession. A journalist can, however, report that some revelers believe the revelry to be as revelric as last year’s, provided they give equal time to other revelrers arguing that last year’s was more revelric, as well as revelrers arguing that this year’s revelry is more revelric than last year’s revelry.

                Balance!

  3. Maybe I should care about this, but CNN has been dead to me for a couple of years now and I just don’t give a damn what they allow their biased hacks do.

    Sorry to say that after the last eight years, nothing surprises me anymore; it’s sad.

  4. Other Bill

    Typical tweet admired on HuffPo:

    clare! @notclare
    Don Lemon is a black gay man who had to talk about Trump every single day this year.

    Let the man drink
    1:11 AM – 1 Jan 2017
    332 332 Retweets 1,036 1,036 likes

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