Free Speech For Me But Not for Thee in Liberal Sports Media

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 15: (L-R) USWNT soccer player Abby Wambach presents Caitlyn Jenner the Arthur Ashe Courage Award onstage during The 2015 ESPYS at Microsoft Theater on July 15, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)

ESPN’s racially divisive website that goes by the name of The Undefeated has been asking why certain athletes and those in the sports world haven’t been speaking out about social issues, politics, or anything that would allow someone of note to comment about injustice.

This new ESPN website is off to a flying start. Funny how ESPN mandated a short time ago that their personalities refrain from commenting on social and or political situations when this is the very stock-and-trade of their new website. Only ESPN and their new site could look at something as seemingly innocuous as analytics in the sports world and figure out a way to manufacture a story that makes it something to consider along racial boundaries –– but that’s exactly what they did.

Athletes as spokespeople for a wide range of issues has little to do with sports. But it has much to do with sports coverage.

A few years ago, a prominent member of the Stanley Cup-winning Boston Bruins, goaltender, Tim Thomas, decided he’d rather not meet the current sitting president after the invitation came from the White House. Tim Thomas stayed home and loudly told the world why.

Thomas was predictably lambasted by the legions of liberal writers, columnists, and talking heads as a guy who was simply tone deaf. More than that, they all claimed that if Thomas had any sense he would have respected the office of the presidency and gone with his team.

If Thomas, a man who detests President  Obama’s views, had declined an opportunity to meet with the previous president for any number of political reasons, he would have been hailed by sports journalists as a man of conviction, a person of supreme character, and a guy who showed George W. Bush how he really felt about him!

Opportunities for athletes to take a public stand on any kind of political or social issue is one that is championed only if that athlete is supporting a left of center position. Any athlete takes a stand in support of a right-leaning cause or against a left–leaning cause receive criticism and advice to shut up.

This is yet another in a long line of one–way street situations.

Athletes as activists receive support only when the athlete decides to promote liberal causes or if that athlete speaks out against conservative ideals. So when you read these stories from writers and talking heads in the sports media imploring athletes to speak out, they’re not exactly championing full diversity of opinions. On the contrary, they advocate for such a situation only when that athlete champions one of their causes.

Let’s say that Major League Baseball hosted a fund-raising dinner for GOP nominee, Donald Trump. Let’s also say that the dinner was a public event attended by a number of both current and former major league players. How do you think the liberally-geared sports media in this country would react to such a dinner?

The above is merely a hypothetical situation, and it would be denounced universally, would it not? However, just a few short years ago the NBA, then under the direction of Commissioner David Stern, hosted such a dinner for the reelection of Barrack Obama. Could you find the coast to coast stories criticizing such an event?

Let’s get real and stop with the charade, okay?

If an athlete wishes to make his or her voice known on issues relating to politics or social concerns it is only permissible under the guise of athletes willing to promote liberal causes…exclusively

I’m for anyone (athlete or not) articulating his or her views on any one of a number of different issues whether I agree or not. If only allegedly tolerant sports media in America felt the same way.


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