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Don Lemon apologizes for interview with Bill Cosby rape victim

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Don Lemon
Robin Marchant/Getty Images

CNN’s Don Lemon made headlines Wednesday morning for some things he said to Joan Tarshis, an alleged Bill Cosby rape victim, during an interview Tuesday night. And now he’s apologizing.

At one point in the interview, Lemon asks Tarshis why she didn’t fight Cosby, who she claimed in a post on Hollywood Elsewhere forced her to perform oral sex. “There are ways not to perform oral sex if you don’t want to do it,” Lemon said. 

By that, he was suggesting Tarshis should have bit Cosby’s penis. But, as Amanda Marcotte wrote at Slate, “it’s a lot easier to tell someone to bite a penis from the comfort of a CNN studio than it is to actually bite a penis that is currently in your mouth.”

Lemon took a moment during a Wednesday broadcast to address the interview. “As I am a victim myself, I would never want to suggest that any victim could have prevented rape,” he said. “If my question to her struck anyone as insensitive, I am sorry, as that was certainly not my intention.”