On Tuesday evening, Fox Sports, which did not return calls for comment from Breitbart News over its allegedly religious-motivated firing of broadcaster Craig James, released a statement proclaiming that James was in fact fired for non-religious reasons:
At Fox Sports we respect all points of view, and despite reports to the contrary, the decision to no longer use Craig James in our college football coverage was simply because he was not a good fit for Fox Sports…Mr. James, while both experienced and knowledgeable, is a polarizing figure in the college sports community. Regrettably, the decision to use him was not properly vetted, and as a result he will no longer provide commentary on Fox Sports Southwest’s college football coverage.
That statement is revisionist and completely contradicted by the fact that the Dallas Morning News quoted a Fox Sports spokesperson after James’ firing, “We just asked ourselves how Craig’s statements would play in our human resources department. He couldn’t say those things here.” As to the notion that James was “not a good fit for Fox Sports,” that is a far cry from Fox Sports’ original celebration of James’ hiring, in which Fox Sports Southwest Senior Executive Producer Mike Anastassiou called James “a talented broadcaster who I’ve admired throughout his career,” and praised James’ “knowledge of college football and the experience he brings as an analyst” as a “tremendous asset to our coverage.” James was fired after one appearance on Fox Sports Southwest under his deal. The newest Fox Sports statement that James was “not properly vetted” does not state who did the initial “vetting,” which senior officials did the follow-up “vetting “resulting in James’ firing, or what considerations were not taken into account by the lower-level hiring staff.
James’ attorney, Hiram Sasser of the Liberty Institute, told Breitbart News, “Fox Sports cannot revise history and pretend they did not tell the public the reason he was fired was because of his religious views on marriage. Fox Sports has made it clear that despite our efforts to resolve this matter amicably, they are unwilling to follow the law. They will be held accountable.”
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).