This past week, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and I tackled a subject that mixes sports and politics in the ugliest of ways.
Recently former MLB pitching great Curt Schilling posted a tweet along with a photo of Adolf Hitler giving the Nazi salute. The image included the words: “It’s said that only 5-10% of Muslims are extremists. In 1940, only 7% of Germans were Nazis. How’d that go?” Schilling tweeted with it: “The math is staggering when you get to true #’s.”
Sobering. Factual. Important. But for his troubles, Schilling received a big, fat suspension from ESPN. The network barred the three-time World Series champion from his announcing duties. Palin smells a rat.
The mama grizzly called out the “bunch of water boys over there running the show.”
“There has been crude, rude bile spewing from that network for years,” Palin added. She referenced a pathetic ESPN radio host who got a few yucks on the air over rape jokes.
Palin pointed out that despite the overboard giggling from the misogynist, animalistic analyst, “It didn’t even draw a chirp from ESPN’s top dogs.”
As for Schilling’s tweet, Palin contended ” It was just a stat—ESPN, you use stats!”
The network that has an ongoing love affair with Michael Vick, Ben Roethlisberger, Tiger Woods, and many others with a checkered past when it comes to women, just won’t stand for a man speaking the truth about the real threat of Muslim jihadists.
“By denying the accuracy of that stat of the tweet it shows (ESPN’s) utter weakness,” Palin said. According to Palin, ESPN is “swallowing ISIS propaganda.”
Palin further contends that the man known in Beantown for his bloody sock and gutsy mound performances is getting a raw deal for personal reasons. “Schilling is not a bleeding heart liberal and I believe that’s why they cracked down on him,” said Palin.
I joined Palin on her program to discuss the Schilling flap in more detail. We talked about the current state of sports, the sad decline of ESPN, and Schilling’s one actual mistake in all of this. Schilling’s tweet with statistics to back it up is not the problem. Deleting the tweet and apologizing for it after being bullied by ESPN, however, is troubling.
I suggested Schilling should’ve “pulled a Trump” and doubled down on his convictions. After all, he has facts and numbers on his side. Outside of Sabermetrics though, it doesn’t seem that ESPN cares much about facts and numbers. Instead, the one-time bastion for the sports nut is now just a shell of its former self. ESPN is like Hollywood. They push Michael Sam, Bruce Jenner, and anti-police sentiment but refuse to let conservatives speak or recognize that ISIS is taking advantage of people through their network.
Perhaps Palin summed it up best. “ESPN [is] just all around awful on this,” she said. “They should’ve just stuck to sports.”