Gayle King Speaks Out On Backlash Over Kobe Bryant Questions

Gayle King Speaks Out On Backlash Over Kobe Bryant Questions in Lisa Leslie Interview

This weekend, Oprah Winfrey had longtime friend and journalist, Gayle King, as a guest on the last stop on her ‘Oprah Winfrey’s 2020 Vision: Your Life In Focus Tour.’

During her special appearance, King took the time to discuss her controversial interview with WNBA star Lisa Leslie, where she pressured Leslie to answer questions regarding her friend Kobe Bryant’s alleged 2003 sexual assault case following his passing.

King revealed that though she has since moved on, there’s still some pain revolving the entire situation.

“I have moved on,” the CBS This Morning host told Winfrey. “Is there a scab? Yeah. But I have moved on.”

The TV personality also revealed that though the situation was “very painful,” she never lost sight of her true intentions behind the now-infamous interview.

“I put on my game face and my big girl pants, because I never lost sight of who I was, what I believe I am, and my intention,” she explained to her best friend. “I’ve never lost sight of that. But it certainly was a learning curve, and it was very painful. But yeah, I think you have to go through that, that makes you question things in life.”

 

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King’s interview with Leslie sparked outrage from social media users worldwide, including celebrities such as rappers 50 Cent and Snoop Dogg.

During their interview, Winfrey also pointed out the silence from many during King’s public shaming, was no different than being slammed.

“In every circumstance, I think this is something for us to remember, It’s not the people who are being mean, it’s not the badness, it’s not the vitriol that’s being put into the world, but it’s the good people who remain silent that becomes so hurtful,” Winfrey explained.

“I think we can disagree politically, we can disagree socially, if you want to, but I just think humanity should prevail always,” King responded. “I think we still have to figure out a way to navigate that with each other. That we can disagree, and you can be mad at me even, but you can’t speak to me the way I was spoken to and threatened.”

Bryant pleaded not guilty in his 2003 sexual assault case. Charges ultimately ended up being dropped with a civil case settled outside of court, PEOPLE reports.

Last month, in an interview with The Associated Press, King revealed that as a journalist, her job can sometimes be challenging.

“As a journalist, it is sometimes challenging to balance doing my job with the emotions and feelings during difficult times,” she said. “I don’t always get it perfect, but I’m constantly striving to do it with compassion and integrity.”

I love that you said through it all you never questioned who you were,” Winfrey added.

“No, I absolutely didn’t, Oprah,” King said.

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