Use all the sports superlatives you’d like on this one.
Take your pick, this will go into the Hall of Fame for historic racial slurs.
The New York Knicks put together an amazing winning streak with Taiwanese basketball sensation Jeremy Lin when they finally lost a game last week. The ESPN headline; “Chink in the Armor” (see screen shot above).
The headline was up on the ESPN mobile website for 35 minutes and actually, it was the second time the network used that phrase with Lin. One of their sports anchors unbelievably used that identical phrase.
ESPN said it is, “conducting a complete review of our cross-platform editorial procedures and are determining appropriate disciplinary action to ensure this does not happen again. We regret and apologize for this mistake.”
ESPN has fired the person responsible for the racial slur on its mobile ap and suspended the news anchor for 30 days and the pledged to “be better in the future.”
Never forget, ESPN is the network that takes a holier-than-thou approach to race and sports. They are the arbiters of right and wrong and they will be the first to try to destroy anybody who gets close to saying or doing something they find politically incorrect. Just ask Rush Limbaugh. He was forced to resign from ESPN when he went after the Philadelphia media for their coverage of Donovan McNabb. ESPN thought what he said was politically incorrect and he was gone. The words “controversial” and “racially insensitive” were used in regards to Limbaugh’s criticism of the Philadelphia media. When you set that bar at that level, you’d better be able to live up to it yourself.
Live TV can be tough and mistakes can be made, I’ve seen plenty of firings in a heartbeat over statements much less egregious. I’m proud that I’ve done 30 years live TV and radio without having anything like this ever happen, so I know first-hand the challenges of putting out a lot of live product in a hurry where you are the only filter. I had zero tolerance with myself and I met that standard.
How about the rest of the Activist Old Media? How will they react to this racial slur? Certainly, coverage would be extensive were ESPN not “one of their own.” ESPN is owned by ABC and I’ll betcha tickets to the next Knicks game that the “Mother Ship” won’t be covering this story.
Will the NBA have any reaction? Their network contract is with ESPN/ABC. The NBA and ESPN/ABC are running commercials during games denouncing gay slurs. Ask Kobe Bryant and Joakim Noah, they were fined $150,000 total for mouthing gay slurs that were caught by the camera. The league is proud of it’s outreach to Hispanic fans by having teams change their jerseys to “Los Lakers” and “Los Suns.” NBA Green Week is coming up soon, so make no doubt, political correctness is the mantra of this league.
ABC did a 4 minute interview with Lin Sunday on “Good Morning America” previewing the game against the Dallas Mavericks on their network. It won’t surprise you that the outrageous racial slur on their sister network was not mentioned. Oh, they talked to Lin about race, but just sorta left out their own racial slur thrown at him. Probably didn’t have time to fit it in.
This is a racial slur for the record books that will largely be ignored by the rest of the media because of its source. Oh, you’ll find it here on the internet, but rarely anywhere else.
Imagine had Fox News used that headline.