Roy Wood Jr. Walks Back Jokes About Don Lemon

‘I needed a joke that gave him flowers too’
Roy Wood Jr. Walks Back Jokes About Don Lemon

Roy Wood Jr. was an equal opportunity offender at last year’s White House Correspondents' Dinner, poking fun at George SantosTucker Carlson, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, Ron DeSantis, Clarence Thomas and even Dominion voting machines. But there’s only one joke target to whom Wood has apologized: former CNN personality Don Lemon

Lemon and Carlson had just been fired from their respective cable news outlets, so, of course, Wood seized the opportunity to take shots. Here’s what the former Daily Show correspondent had to say about Lemon: “Speaking of assholes, Don Lemon is out of a job. Don Lemon released a statement saying he got fired from CNN, then CNN released a statement saying that they offered Don a meeting. They had to part ways because Don Lemon can’t even accurately report a story about Don Lemon. I still think that Don Lemon deserved more, CNN. That ain’t how you fire somebody. It’s messed up. How funny is it that you work in the news, then watch on the news that you got fired from the news? Don Lemon is now the most obnoxious guy in the history of CNN. That’s not fair! Even Jeffrey Toobin is looking at Don Lemon like, ‘Oooh, he rub me the wrong way.’”

But now, Wood has had second thoughts about his remarks. Appearing on The Don Lemon Show this week, the comic apologized for the burns after Lemon admitted receiving a lot of post-dinner texts along the lines of “Why would he do that shit? Why would he make that joke?” Even Lemon’s mom reached out with, “Why would Roy Wood Jr. say those things?” 

Wood specifically addressed the punchline about Lemon’s inability to accurately report a story about Don Lemon: “Let me say first to you, I’m sorry for how that joke was worded, it did not come out the right way. Second thing working against me was public sentiment against you was 50/50 already off the top. So people were able to take that joke and use it as kerosene for the Don Lemon fucking burning at the stake or whatever, which is what they were trying to do to you during that week.”

Wood expressed regret about not digging deeper into the story, especially with what he knows now about departed CNN management. In hindsight, Wood said he should have given Lemon more props for “uplifting Blackness.” 

In the back half of Wood’s Correspondents’ speech, he talked “about my father’s role in Black media, I talked about Black radio … and all of these people who are fighting to make sure that Black stuff is told at a time when they’re trying to mute it with CRT. And that’s the part where it felt like, ‘Ah, I needed a joke that gave him flowers too.’”

Wood said he tried to clean it up on The View the next day, but the damage had already been done. Jokes about Lemon getting fired? Fine, but Wood wishes he’d tied those punchlines back to who was now going to hold CNN’s feet to the fire on racial issues.

Lemon accepted the apology, assuring Wood that he had a sense of humor. Lemon’s mom, on the other hand, might be another story. 


Scroll down for the next article
Forgot Password?