A baffling moment occurred during CNN anchor Don Lemon‘s interview with prominent Muslim-American civil rights lawyer Arsalan Iftikhar Wednesday night, in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack. Lemon asked Iftikhar point blank if he supports ISIS — for no apparent reason other than he’s Muslim.
Lemon was pursuing a line of questioning about the prevalence of Islamic extremism around the world, citing a recent poll which found that one in six French citizens supports the Islamist terrorist group, then directed the bizarre question at Iftikhar.
Iftikhar responded in disbelief, “Wait, did you just ask if I support ISIS?”
The lawyer, although rattled, used the question to address how the poll could be interpreted to mean a broader support for Islamic ideology, rather than for ISIS’ brand of terrorism.
Iftikhar also explicitly condemned Wednesday’s brutal attack on the office of Charlie Hebdo and voiced his support for the victims’ families.