ESPN’s Jemele Hill, who called President Trump a “white supremacist” and “unqualified to be president” in a series of tweets two weeks ago, penned an essay on the network’s website admitting that she should not have used Twitter to vent her frustrations. remained critical of Trump rather than apologizing for what she said.
She remained critical of Trump rather than apologizing for what she said, however.
Since my tweets criticizing President Donald Trump exploded into a national story, the most difficult part for me has been watching ESPN become a punching bag and seeing a dumb narrative kept alive about the company’s political leanings.
If we’re keeping it all the way real, that narrative is often pushed by the folks in the media who benefit most from that notion and all the attention that criticism of ESPN brings.
She said she took part in a “dumb narrative” with her inflammatory tweets.
I do know that we’re clearly living in a time of blurred lines. The president’s recent inflammatory attacks on NFL players, his choice to disinvite the Golden State Warriors to the White House, are just the latest examples of silence being impossible. This is not a time for retreating comfortably to a corner.
Still, Twitter wasn’t the place to vent my frustrations because, fair or not, people can’t or won’t separate who I am on Twitter from the person who co-hosts the 6 p.m. SportsCenter. Twitter also isn’t a great place to have nuanced, complicated discussions, especially when it involves race. Warriors player Kevin Durant and I probably need to take some classes about how to exercise better self-control on Twitter. Lesson learned.
Also, let me be clear about something else: My criticisms of the president were never about politics. In my eyes, they were about right and wrong. I love this country. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t want it to be better.
By attacking the president of the United States, she made it political.
As I think on it now, I wonder about the real lesson my grandmother, who died seven years ago, wanted me to learn. Sure, not stealing is the obvious takeaway. But maybe the larger point was: Be better. No matter what.
Hill should heed her late grandmother’s advice to “be better” by apologizing to the president for her nasty tweets and stop trying to explain it away by using racism as a cover.