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Jemele Hill vs. ESPN And The 45th President

By Brian Richards | Social Media | September 15, 2017 |

By Brian Richards | Social Media | September 15, 2017 |

There’s a reason why Donald Trump has the support and admiration of so many White supremacists.

His desire to build a wall to keep Mexicans out of the United States (and also having Mexico pay for said wall). Saying horrible and largely inaccurate things about Barack Obama and what he has and hasn’t done when he was President. Saying horrible and disrespectful things about the grief-stricken parents of a soldier who died while defending his country. The travel ban. Wanting to get rid of DACA. His response to the hate march and terror attacks in Charlottesville resulting in the death of Heather Heyer. And so many other things that would take so many more paragraphs to list and describe.

And yet, despite all of that, there are people who truly can’t bear the thought of people referring to President #45 as racist. Because if there’s one thing that bothers White people (and if a sentence starting with the words “Not all” is forming on your lips and/or fingertips at this very moment, I highly recommend that you shut the fuck up), it’s not racism or acts of racism. It’s being called a racist or being accused of racism.

Which brings us to ESPN sportscaster Jemele Hill. Who earlier this week wrote this on her Twitter in response to Kid Rock’s claim that he intends on running for Senate, and that the media is making him appear to be racist:

And that soon led to her tweeting this:

ESPN didn’t respond particularly well to what Jemele said about President #45…


…and after recovering their monocles which had fallen into their drinks, they tweeted this in response:

And if that wasn’t enough, White House Press Secretary Busy Philipps Sarah Huckabee Sanders became involved in the situation and seemingly made things even worse when a reporter asked for her input on what Jemele had tweeted. Fortunately, Sarah wasn’t holding a Tiki torch while responding:

Which only resulted in more people showing their support for Jemele and speaking out against President #45 and his administration by stating the obvious with their own tweets, and many of them did so under the hashtag #NaziBucketChallenge.

While also pointing out the hypocrisy of Jemele Hill being targeted for punishment because of her words against the President, whereas ‘Miss Texas’ Margana Wood was equally harsh and accurate with her own words against President #45 and the response to her was the complete opposite.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders wasn’t the only person to publicly go after Jemele Hill for what she said, as former baseball player Darryl Strawberry (I know, I wasn’t expecting that name to pop up in regards to this story either) decided to get in on the action as well:

From his interview on FOX Business Network’s Varney & Co.:

“I think no one should call anyone anything. President Trump, he’s a great man to me. He was always gracious to me. I really love him, his family, I was on his show, and he’s always been kind to me … I’ve known him quite well and every time I’ve seen him and been around him he’s always been so gracious with me and I’m always grateful for that…I never want to sit and point fingers at someone like the president of the United States. He’s got a job to do, and we all need to pray for him. We all need to support him.”


Jemele finally decided to respond to all of this on Twitter:

Which some reporters interpreted as an apology, even though apologizing is not at all what Jemele Hill did:

And just when you thought that ESPN couldn’t possibly look any worse in this situation, ThinkProgress came through to prove us all wrong:

From ThinkProgress:

Hill — who was caught in the middle of a firestorm of controversy that began on Monday night when she tweeted that President Donald Trump was a white supremacist, which escalated when ESPN issued a statement on Tuesday reprimanding her comments and which exploded when White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that Hill’s tweets were a “fireable offense” — was calm and composed throughout the hour, and the show went on as usual.

However, two sources familiar with the situation told ThinkProgress that this was not the original plan.

ESPN originally tried to keep Hill off the air on Wednesday evening, but [Michael] Smith refused to do the show without her, the sources said. Both sources also said that producers reached out to two other black ESPN hosts, Michael Eaves and Elle Duncan, to ask them to serve as fill-ins for the show — but Eaves and Duncan did not agree to take the place of Hill and Smith, either.

At 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon, Eaves expressed his frustration with that day.

While also proving that there were people who had Jemele’s back, and not just on Twitter.

ESPN of course denied all of this:

And did so in a way that’s as believable as James Woods telling us that he doesn’t do cocaine.

(Which he does not. Let me state that again: James Woods DOES NOT DO COCAINE AT ALL!)

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See? Amber Tamblyn agrees with me.

As of right now, Jemele is still employed by ESPN and working her desk at SportsCenter, and her colleagues have no interest in throwing her under the bus in order to make themselves or their employers look good.

Considering that there were no lies whatsoever in anything that Jemele Hill tweeted, I’d say that’s a good thing.

Brian Richards is a Staff Contributor. You can follow him on Twitter.