Just when it seemed that the biggest controversies in football consisted of the Washington Redskins being criticized for having a “racial” team name and the Miami Dolphins dealing with accusations of bullying by suspended guard Richie Incognito, along comes ESPN analyst Kevin Blackistone, who charged on Wednesday that the “Star-Spangled Banner” is nothing short of a “war anthem” that should not be played before any sports event.
During a segment of the cable television network's Around the Horn weekday program, the frequent guest also stated that the national anthem was first played “in the World Series back in 1917” and asserted “it's time for people to back away” from the beloved song.
Liberal bias in journalism is not just bad for the profession as an abstract concept, it's bad for the bottom line of media companies and their shareholders. That was the argument of one Justin Danhof of the conservative National Center for Public Policy Research (NCPPR) when he attended a Disney shareholders meeting and confronted the entertainment company's CEO Bob Iger about liberal bias at the news division of ABC. "Liberal bias pervades Disney's media outlets" and "it's time to stop denying this bias and start doing something about it," Danhof argued, having cited former ESPN analyst Rob Parker's "cornball brother" crack about black quarterback and alleged Republican Robert Griffin III and ABC News's Brian Ross's infamous episode in which he hinted that Auroroa, Colorado theater shooter James Holmes might be a Tea Party member.
Danhof argued that Disney executives need to take seriously NCPPR's concerns and the concerns of other conservatives who happen to own Disney stock. Danhof appealed not so much to Iger's sense of journalistic integrity but rather the bottom line: Putting out a fairer, more balanced news product may help ABC attract more conservative viewers, and with them, higher ratings and more customers buying products from ABC News program sponsors, leading of course to higher profit margins for Disney. [h/t Huffington Post; Danhof's statement embedded below the page break]
ESPN has parted ways with Rob Parker, a commentator for the sports network who caused a national controversy by saying that Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is “not one of us” and only “kind of black” because he is engaged to a white woman and is rumored to be a Republican.
"[J]ust when we were finally starting to forget about those asinine comments [Rob] Parker made about Robert Griffin III on ESPN First Take about a month ago—and just as Parker was about to finish up his 30-day suspension from the Worldwide Leader—he's come out and, in a way, tried to defend what he said once again," Chris Yuscavage of Complex.com reported today.
"During an interview on a program called Flashpoint on Channel 4 in Detroit over the weekend, Parker talked about the backlash he received after calling RGIII a 'cornball brother' and didn't seem all that contrite about what he'd say about the Redskins quarterback," Yuscavage noted. You can read his full story here.
Our friend Bob Parks, the senior video producer for our sister site MRCTV.org, was invited on Canada's Sun News recently to discuss ESPN's Rob Parker smearing Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. Parker was skeptical of RG3, wondering if he was possibly a "cornball brother" who wasn't "down with the cause" because Griffin has a white fiancee and is rumored by some to be a Republican.
"Once Parker thought that there was an outside chance that Robert Griffin III might be, heaven forbid, a Republican, that's when all bets were off," Parks told Michael Coren of Canada's Sun News. Parker's complaint about Griffin's choice to marry a white woman by itself was a suspendable offense, Parks noted, but "being a Republican" and especially a "black Republican" athlete, well, "that's a pretty bad thing" in "the hallowed halls of ESPN," where the political lean of the newsroom defaults to the liberal Democratic side as in much of the rest of the media. [Watch the full video below]
Cable sports network ESPN has suspended its commentator Rob Parker following his offensive racial tirade against Washington Redskins player Robert Griffin III. In a segment on yesterday’s First Take program, Parker said that the rookie quarterback was “not one of us” and that he was only “kind of black” because he is engaged to a white woman, is rumored to be a Republican, and has spoken in favor of racial neutrality, sentiments that the sports analyst derided as “cornball.”
“Following yesterday’s comments, Rob Parker has been suspended until further notice,” network spokesman Josh Krulewitz said in a statement. “We are conducting a full review.”
Update 14:23. Rob Parker has been suspended for his offensive remarks.
During the Thursday edition of the ESPN show First Take, analyst Rob Parker injected racial issues into the game as he took a bitter swipe at Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, criticizing him for being engaged to a white woman and possibly being one of those evil, nasty Republicans.
“Is he a brother or a cornball brother?” Parker said. “He’s not really one of us. He’s kind of black, but he’s not really, like, the guy you want to hang out with.”