ESPN Sports Anchor Jemele Hill used a social media account recently to describe President Donald Trump as a “White supremacist” and a “bigot.”
Good for her!
She should know very well about racists and racism, because she works at a company and in an industry that is permeated with company owners and employees that have historically hired staff members with racial attitudes and opinions in mind. They have also have covered sporting and news events somewhat based on race.
No diverse events
If you don’t know, more than a third of ESPN’s audience and viewers happen to be people of color. But a third of the events they cover are not about events that interest Blacks, Hispanics, Native Americans and other so-called minorities.
For years, there have been Black people in sports and in sports media that have stood up and spoken out about racism in politics, society and in everyday life.
Jim Thorpe talked about it, Jack Johnson talked about it, Jackie Robinson talked about it, Muhammad Ali talked about it, Jim Brown talked about it, Curt Flood talked about it, Craig Hodges talked about it, Bill Rhoden talked about it, Tommie Smith and John Carlos talked about it.
Other Black athletes and Blacks in sports media have voiced their opinions about White racism, White nationalism and White supremacy in every aspect of American society!
I’ve been there
Before ESPN became a dream in somebody’s mind, Lucius Gantt covered sports on an international, not national, basis as a sports reporter for The Associated Press in New York and Atlanta.
In 1973, I wrote three of the top sports stories in the world, including “Baseball’s Unbreakable Records” (that is imitated every year) and one about brothers Jesus, Matty and Felipe Alou playing in the same major league baseball game at the same time at Yankee Stadium.
Did I talk about racism and discrimination while at AP? Yes! I talked about White supremacy before 1973. God knows I’ve talked about it all my life.
There’s a difference
I applaud Jemele Hill’s thoughts about bigotry and the thoughts shared by Colin Kaepernick, Michael Bennett and others. But I think there is a difference as it relates to Hill.
When you apologize for saying the right thing, it says something about you!
Even when some people say truthful things, they can’t handle the truth, so to speak!
You don’t have to go back on social media when you are correct and say, “I’m sorry,” or “Any comment I made was just my opinion,” unless you feel a need to cover your ass or save your job!
None of the athletes and sports media people listed above felt a need to apologize about truthful descriptions of their feelings about racism. Just like me, they said what they thought was the truth and they didn’t care whether their employers liked it or not.
They all know
The problem with today’s media folk is this, they know who they are and the people that hire them know who they are hiring. Any Black person that gets hired by ESPN is expected to have opinions that ESPN likes.
Yes, Bill Rhoden, who also works for ESPN, is an exception. But Jemele Hill is no Bill Rhoden.
There certainly are White supremacists, White segregationists, White nationalists and White racists here and everywhere else in the world. But there are also devils and beasts around every corner.
No apology from me
I want you to know if you read something I write in The Gantt Report or hear something I say about racial bias, discrimination, supremacy, nationalism, animus or misconduct, I write what I mean and say what I meant!
Thank God there are Blacks and other people of color that will never, ever apologize for telling the truth!
Buy Gantt’s latest book, “Beast Too: Dead Man Writing,” on Amazon.com and from bookstores everywhere. “Like” The Gantt Report page on Facebook. Contact Lucius at www.allworldconsultants.net.