In a video for ESPN’s “The Undefeated,” “Pardon the Interruption” co-host Michael Wilbon and ESPN senior NBA writer Marc J. Spears reacted to the feud between Fox News Channel’s Laura Ingraham and Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James over James’ criticisms of President Donald Trump.
Wilbon said Ingraham’s comments are “very thinly veiled,” adding the Fox News host “comes off like a bigot.”
“It’s interesting that all these uber-conservatives talk about what stable geniuses they are, but they sound like morons when they try and dictate to other people what they should talk about, what they’re smart enough to talk about. She comes off like a bigot.”
Fox News released a statement to Breitbart News from Ingraham that denied any racial intent in her remarks.
Statement as follows:
In 2003, I wrote a New York Times bestseller called ‘Shut Up & Sing,’ in which I criticized celebrities like the Dixie Chicks & Barbra Streisand who were trashing then-President George W. Bush. I have used a variation of that title for more than 15 years to respond to performers who sound off on politics. I’ve told Robert DeNiro to ‘Shut Up & Act,’ Jimmy Kimmel to ‘Shut Up & Make Us Laugh,’ and just this week told the San Antonio Spurs’ Gregg Popovich to ‘Shut up & Coach.’
If pro athletes and entertainers want to freelance as political pundits, then they should not be surprised when they’re called out for insulting politicians. There was no racial intent in my remarks – false, defamatory charges of racism are a transparent attempt to immunize entertainment and sports elites from scrutiny and criticism.
Follow Trent Baker on Twitter @MagnifiTrent