On Wednesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called for the firing of ESPN host #JemeleHill over her Monday night tweet calling Donald Trump a “white supremacist.”
Although Hill regretfully acknowledged that her tweet painted her employer in an “unfair light,” ThinkProgress exclusively reported, citing sources, that ESPN tried to keep Hill off-air on Wednesday night. However, the only reason Hill was able to proceed with regularly scheduled programming is because her co-host #MichaelSmith refused to host the show without her. According to ThinkProgress, ESPN tried to take things a step further by replacing both hosts with two other black personalities, Michael Eaves and Elle Duncan, but they declined. ⠀
As the ThinkProgress report surfaced and quickly spread, ESPN communications manager fired back to clear the air, tweeting “We never asked any other anchors to do last night’s show,” Chris LaPlaca said. “Period.” ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
The senior vice president for news and information at SportsCenter provided a statement to ThinkProgress as well, saying things went the way they wanted them to go.⠀⠀⠀⠀
“Yesterday was a hard and unusual day,” he said, “with a number of people interpreting the day without a full picture that happened. In the end, ultimately, Michael and Jemele appearing on the show last night and doing the show the way they did is the outcome we always desired.”
However, Michael Eaves tweeted a cryptic message on Wednesday, just an hour and a half before the SportsCenter show was set to air, that raised eyebrows and concerns about the truth. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
“Man…this day got me like…,” Eaves tweeted with a few emojis that expressed anger and zipped lips. ⠀⠀⠀
Since the incident, Hill has not apologized for her comments, nor has she deleted the tweets that caused the controversy.
Do you stand with Jemele Hill?