Jemele Hill Suspended by ESPN After Response to Jerry Jones

After Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he’d bench players who “disrespect the flag,” Hill suggested people boycott the team’s sponsors.

Comments: 161

  1. Had Trump not interfered, this protest at NFL events would have had the same result as Kapernicki's. Quiet pressure from NFL top brass and no minute to minute media coverage. The protesters got more than they ever would have if they had to BUY coverage.

  2. "The players who have protested by sitting or kneeling during the anthem have insisted that they are not disrespecting the flag or the military, but rather trying to raise awareness of police brutality and racial injustice in the United States." What's that saying about the road to hell being paved with good intentions?

  3. Try a different venue than at a football game which also happens to be your place of work. Try doing that at your law firm or doctor's office and see how fast you get called in to the "principal's" office... lets call it what it is : anti social anti- American behavior..

  4. Well, unlike with Trump, she or at least her bosses do report directly to Jerry Jones so hard to say this wasn't predictable. Glad she's taking a stand anyway.

  5. Taking a stand? really!! on her job? mixing her personal beliefs on the job is OK by you? it's totally unprofessional! any HR resources department will attest to that. but because she's black she gets a free pass?? is that what I'm being led to believe?

  6. She's a pundit, taking a stand is what her job is.

  7. What a gift! All the players have to do is pick one player each game to kneel during the national anthem. Jones will cancel each game. He could forfeit the whole season. What better way to make outrage about police violence against African Americans clear? And what better response to owners who threaten players to silence them than loss of revenue for the owners (the response to Trump's call for a boycott)? A truly gormless threat.

  8. Thanks for making my day. I hate the Cowboys and hadn't thought of Jones cancelling a game per kneeling player. Great idea!!!

  9. When the President uses Twitter to criticize NFL players for kneeling during the national anthem then there is no reason why an ESPN personality shouldn't be able to do the same on the same social media outlet. Ms Hill deserves the right to express her personal opinion as much, or more, than the President, who is supposed to represent the entire nation. As a (White) veteran I do not see kneeling during the singing of the Star Spangled Banner as disrespecting me, and I resent Pence and Trump as equating this act with disrespecting veterans. Donald Trump is not a veteran. He pulled strings to get out of being drafted. Which war did Pence fight in????

  10. The NFL will pay ESPN $15 billion over the next few years to televise and promote it. It's not reasonable to expect ESPN to allow one of it's on-air personalities to suggest to fans a way to undermine its partner's product. This is a no-brainer.

  11. Indeed, as a white 76 year old veteran, I completely agree with your thoughts.

  12. Hill certainly has every right to state her opinions without government punishment--that is the First Amendment in action. She does not, however, have a right to expect her employer to ignore her statements or actions that reflect on the employer--the First Amendment doesn't apply to ESPN. This is no different than if a NYT reporter called for boycotting the largest advertisers. The NYT would be well within its rights to suspend or terminate the reporter.

  13. While I might agree with Ms. Hill's politics and opinions on our chief executive, I feel we are looking at a double standard here that spells trouble for ESPN. The new 6 o'clock Sports Center team would never pass the scrutiny of using the ratings of the show to determine their longevity on the air. It is also clear that consciously or not she seeks exemption from being held to certain standards of sports journalism either because of her gender or her race. Not fair. If you want to play with the varsity or the pros, expect the hits that come with it. Can't have it both ways, Ms. Hill.

  14. Hill thinks she's exempt. Like the son of the county judge in 1911 Alabama.

  15. Re: "Barry Fitzpatrick": "Can't have it both ways, Ms. Hill." ... Moreover, to paraphrase our previous President, ESPN is just the "JV Team"... Move on.

  16. If companies continue to fire employees for expressing their personal opinions on social media, if every post is pre-approved and corporate-friendly, people will tire of social media, the illusion of genuine human contact (i.e., the "social" aspect) having evaporated.

  17. I used to think Colin K was courageous and timely when he began his dignified protest against indifference -- all during the superficial, overblown bought-and-paid-for fake sentimentality of the star spangled banner and its military-paid advertisements during this showtime. The discussions and tweets since then have made me feel Colin K is a saint. Who could have guessed that one knee could generate nationwide discussion about American values not "against" America but against the immense indifference in the face of America's failure to uphold those values for people of color. The more the Pence-people complain about being bothered and inconvenienced by this topic, the better.

  18. I'm not sure why Ms. Hill would think that suggesting a boycott of the Cowboy's advertisers (who also advertise via her employer) would have no negative impact on her from her employer. If you're her employer, now you have to face your advertisers - who you depend on for income - as well as a key counterparty (the Cowboys), all of whom face the threat of lost revenues due to her actions. All of these entities are already facing boycott pressure from the Right, and now Ms. Hill wants to bring more pressure from the Left.

  19. It's almost like a mirror image of the President. The incessant, self-important, uncontrollable need to share a personal opinion with everyone. I am in no way a supporter of Trump, but I also am not under the illusion that I could go to work and act in a way that limits the flow of income that funds my own salary. It's almost as if there is a disconnect as to how her platform is actually paid for, and perhaps an assumption that the audience will simply show up to hear her personal thoughts and opinions on whatever, when the funding is pulled for the sports programming. If her convictions are so strong, she must be aware that her employers are potentially not going to be on board with such an all-in commitment.

  20. It is interesting that the union believes it is the players have a "Constitutional right" to do what they are doing. That is simply not true. I work in an office. I may have a right to stand in the middle of the hall with a Vote Trump or Vote Hillary sign, but my company has a right to tell me I cannot do it and fire me if I decide to do so anyway. The players when they are on the field are at work. They need to abide by their work rules just like every other person who works in this country. If management has rules for employment (such as uniforms, the need to wear a tie, etc.), they need to abide by those rules. We all do. They are free to do what they want on their "off time", but not at work. It's the way it is everywhere. They are not special simply because they are athletes.

  21. As a former employer of a number of people, I agree 100 %. We always had good morale in our office--everyone--employer and employee -- working for the common good. But there were rules, and discipline when those rules were broken, which the employees understood. Certainly those rules left no room for employees coming to work with any sort of distracting personal agenda. On they're own time, what the employees did was none of my business. So, what don't these highly paid athletes understand about this scenario? Good for Jerry Jones to set a clear standard, and being prepared to enforce it.

  22. They actually do have a Constitutional right to do what they're doing. That right doesn't protect them from non-government imposed consequences, but they have the right nonetheless whether they're at work or not.

  23. Welcome to corporate fascist America where one leaves his constitutional rights at the door. This patriotism thing is getting way out of hand. Why should one have to stand or even respect the flag? I find this aggressive patriotism to be dangerous and idiotic. More and more this country is reminding me of Germany in 30's, where a minority of racist idiots and their corporate thugs are trying to scare the majority into submission and silence. We need to deal with our demons : Racism. Patriotism/nationalism, and Religion!

  24. Trump is masterful at deflecting attention away from himself and on to other issues that, by comparison, are of little importance. He's doing that now by making Kapernicki's desire to fight an injustice of police brutality something against the American flag. My husband loves watching the NFL on Sundays but since this event, he has vowed not to watch it again until things have been made right for Kapernicki. So far, he's sticking to his guns. We're watching college football instead. We, the people, have to take a stand against wrongdoing or nothing will change. We must be willing to put our own necks on the line for the greater good if we expect to see change and it has to be a unified effort. Up the ante and take the next step, together. I congratulate Kapernicki and thank you for your sacrifice. It's because of you that we, avid fans have taken a vow to boycott NFL games until things have been put right again.

  25. The only people disrespecting the flag are the fools who insist it must be worshiped, and who don't have the slightest understanding of the freedoms it represents. Why do we play the national anthem at sporting events? Fake patriotism.

  26. Jones has no problem hiring and coddling big dudes for the Cowboys who beat up women, and who should be in jail. He has zero moral authority with respect to anything. His threat to bench black players who choose to protest police lawlessness by kneeling for the anthem is all about business and nothing to do with patriotism. ESPN is a business partner of the NFL, and that's the bottom line for Jemele's suspension. A black woman speaking truth to power getting a slap down- same old story, different day.

  27. [[ESPN is a business partner of the NFL, and that's the bottom line for Jemele's suspension. A black woman speaking truth to power getting a slap down- same old story, different day.]] Anyone, regardless of gender or race, who makes public comments that could cost an employer money will get slapped down. Rather than make herself the story by calling Trump a white supremacist and calling for a boycott of Cowboys advertisers, Hill should have given players and owners a platform to talk calmly about their thoughts and feelings. Put another way, I don't support Trump but I also don't care what Ms. Hill thinks of him. All she did was rally her base and rally Trump's base. Now she's "famous" but no one is listening to anyone else. She thought her twitter platform was most important and she was wrong. Instead of focusing on Trump, she should have focused on issues like mass incarceration. I don't think she's terribly bright. I don't think Trump is terribly bright, either.

  28. Why can't she tweet in her own time using her private Twitter account? How can the president (yes, he does not deserve a P) tweet vile opinions and others cannot tweet their (better) thoughts?

  29. An employer has the right to terminate an employee whose actions also reflect on the employer in a way they don't desire. Pretty simple. Ms. Hill ignored the first communication from her employer. It is also Jerry Jones' right to terminate employees/players whose actions while 'on the clock' negatively impact his organization. I find it ludicrous when players are saying they don't intend to disrespect the flag. As Kepernick said 'I'm not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country....'....while wearing shirts praising Fidel Castro. And now they are kneeling in prayer? Sure.

  30. Just a question--Did Jones serve in Vietnam? He is of the 'correct age.' Did he honor the flag with real service when he had the chance? Or maybe he is another super patriot 'chicken hawk' like those who lead us into Iraq

  31. What is the saying about not killing the messenger? If a white guy tweeted this stuff would Trump and friends be so outraged? FYI - just saw on MLB Astros tweeted a locker room celebration with a player in an American flag speedo spraying champagne.

  32. The answer, then, is to boycott ESPN. And the answer for the players is for ALL players to flout the rule and kneel. And the answer for the fans is to boycott the NFL. And the answer for the voters is to exercise their voting rights and get the guy who has caused all of this uproar by sticking his nose in a private employment matter where it doesn't belong out of the White House as soon as humanly possible. Can there be any doubt that African Americans have the upper hand here? Let's get back to basics. Football and football broadcasters may be owned by rich white men, but blacks make up a huge percentage of the players and, now, broadcasters. Would it even be possible for NFL owners to field a team next Sunday if every single black player knelt during the Anthem? This needs a little collective action. It's important enough for people of good will to come together and resist the racist in the White House.

  33. Probably better to go out in a blaze of glory for controversial political statements than get fired for hosting a show that is downright unwatchable.

  34. The Dallas Cowboys should get together as a team and decide to ALL take a knee. Then what would JJ do?

  35. Re: "Full Name": "The Dallas Cowboys should get together as a team and decide to ALL take a knee. Then what would JJ do?" The answer to that is quite simple--JJ would not refer to the Dallas Cowboys as "America's Team" ever again...

  36. She calls for a public boycott of a business her employer has a vital financial relationship with and she gets in hot water for it. Wow! Who would think you'd get in trouble for that?

  37. The white owner gets to intimidate black players. The objecting black reporter is suspended. Obvious and blatant racism. The fact that the white owner gets a way with it tells us a lot about the acceptance of white racism in this country.

  38. People of conscience will boycott the NFL, this season.

  39. For crying out loud. Since when is sport conflated with our military, hyper patriotism, and the supposed sanctity of the flag and national anthem? Please do not tell me that the players who kneel are disrespecting anything except what they see as injustice routinely meted out to black Americans. The older I get (I'm 68, white and a woman) the more I realize that drilling down into issues often, like really, really often, reveals racism at their core. And then we divert to criticism of behavior (non-violent, respectful opposition) rather than having a real discussion about race in America. Would the response have been different if Kaepernick were white? I wonder.

  40. Since the NFL chose to wrap themselves in the flag. Take a hard look at the NFL logo, what do you see? A flag. NFL = National Football League with AFC (American) and NFC (National) divisions. All the helmets have flag stickers. It is common to have Air Force flyovers during the anthem and flags that are the size of the entire field. They have military members hold the flag during the anthem. It's their branding and it's intentional. It appeals to their fans. When your employees disrespect this it is going to cause problems. You don't have to be a genius to see this.

  41. "Change happens when advertisers are impacted." THAT is what bothered ESPN.

  42. Let's change names...replace NFL with National Ballet Group (NBG), and ESPN with Entertainment Arts Network (EAN). A person from a show on EAN's Ballet show called Dance Center, calls out the owner of one of the ballet groups in a squabble over standing vs. sitting/kneeling for the National Anthem before a ballet performance. Would anyone care?! The NFL is an entertainment company to play a game...who cares what they do. The President, the VP, or anyone else certainly shouldn't be spending their precious time on caring about it no more than caring about any other entertainment performance and how dancers/players respond before a performance to a song.

  43. "The President, the VP, or anyone else certainly shouldn't be spending their precious time on caring about it" If you do not like the manner in which they do their jobs, you don't have to vote for them last time. I'm sure you were big MAGA until now, right? Right?

  44. And the ballet fans don't have to buy tickers. And the ballet company can fire any or all of their employees unless they go out of business first. Obviously some people, right or wrong, care very deeply about our national symbols and they too have a right to not support businesses that disagree with their values. If you don't like Trump go to the ballot box in 2020 and vote to fire him.

  45. Some one should ask the flag or the anthem if they feel "disrespected." With all the problems in the country and world I can't believe people are getting worked up about this!

  46. Shame on ESPN. What exactly are their "social media guidelines," I wonder? Advertisers are the number one priority, that much is clear ...

  47. Empty words and PR posturing from Jerry Jones as usual. He's always looked the other way at serious drug offenders and domestic abusers if they were good players. You think if Bryant or Prescott took a knee he'd sit them? That said, it's pretty hard not to agree with this suspension. I support what HIll has to say, but you can't openly call for boycotts affecting a major business partner of your employer without punishment.

  48. The players should stand for the flag. They should also shut down the league for 1 day maybe around Veterans day, give up a check, in protest without disrespecting the flag. That would show courage and respect and be a protest that people would respect because they are putting their money where their mouth is. It would also send a message to the owners that the players have the same power of the owners to shut it down.

  49. Why allow Trump to define what the plkayer's action are about. As Sen. Corker puts it the WH is an adult day-care center. Why listen to the tweeter-in-chief. Trump is distracting from his failure in Puerto Rico. Perhaps he was practicing for a career in the NBA down there. He ought to want to become POTUS of the entire nation, not just the "good people" of Charlottesville.

  50. Good idea to avoid anything to do with Jerry Jones and the Cowboys. I'm sure he was extra upset because a smart & fair minded football player (Aaron Rodgers) upset his apple cart (again) in racist country. It is time for Elliot, Dak and other significant African American Dallas players to take a few weeks off.

  51. Thank you Ms. Hill.

  52. So ESPN has allowed the protest against racial inequality to be falsely deflected into a "disrespect" of the flag discussion? Everyone (especially the traitor, Pence, Jones, and any and all people who try to falsely change the subject) who pointedly ignores the reason for the protest, which is RACIAL INEQUALITY, by absurdly trying to claim it's about dishonoring the flag, the military, first responders (really?), or the country itself, is LYING. Those are fascist tactics, meant to obscure and divide the country by refusing to address the issue. Standing up to racism is always appropriate, and people with the guts to put their careers on the line to clarify the issue deserve thanks, not derision.

  53. "Standing up to racism is always appropriate, and people with the guts to put their careers on the line to clarify the issue deserve thanks, not derision." Brave people are indeed standing up against Ms. Hill and her racism. At great career risk. For example the President.

  54. NFL players have been totally clear that kneeling using the Anthem is a protest of police brutality/procedures. Trump says it is not. If he says that the moon is made of green cheese, will that become a fact? The hysteria of social media "news" is out of control.

  55. And this make me wonder, why something is taken for "truth" just because the President says it. As someone who has never served the country in a selfless manner, it does seem like what he says could be questioned a little more by the press.

  56. ESPN says Ms. Hill's tweets were "impulsive." This is a not-so-subtle way of signaling that women, and/or black people, and ESPECIALLY female black people, are prone to act on impulse, with all the barely-disguised racism and sexism that implies. It couldn't possibly be that Ms. Hill, as a black person who has lived for decades in a country tainted and stained by racism, is quite simply calling it as her experience has taught her to see it. Oh, no. She has to be "impulsive." In this debate, I see only one participant who should properly be termed impulsive, and he is the white man who claims to lead the country.

  57. Fine, she was not impulsive. Accordingly, her tweets were premeditated. She thought about how to insult one of her employer's business partners, we confess it. Does that make it better, or worse?

  58. "Insult" is your choice of words, not mine. As is "premeditated," which inappropriately suggests some kind of criminal context. I would say that she thought about how to oppose Jerry Jones's views in a public forum, and did so. That is the kind of thing that we Americans are supposed to value and encourage, but as we see in situations like this one, actually often do not. I personally think Jemele Hill's opinion is as good as Jerry Jones's; perhaps you and I differ there.

  59. Actually it is much worse if her tweets were not impulsive. She has a plan to get fired while attempting to drive ESPN out of business. Same result as to getting suspended but makes her look like a self-destructive lunatic. You can apologize for spur of the moment impulsive acts, which have nothing to do with gender or race, they just sometimes happen. You cannot simply say I am sorry if this was actually a well thought out strategy.

  60. Americans died from 1774 until today thinking they were fighting for just causes. One of those just causes is the right to protest. That right is protected in many ways in our Constitution and Bill of Rights. Exercising those rights is not an affront to people who fought for those rights or the flag that represents ideals including the right to protest. Protesters are by their very existence a boil on the neck of those who want to claim that America is a country that tolerates those rights and by its nature is a country that draws and welcomes people from other countries because of those rights. One right is the equal administration of laws without regard to color, national origin, religion, race, sex, etc. The players are protesting against the unequal treatment of people of color under the law. That protest is peaceful and powerful and that is why the so-called president wants it stopped. He did not mention his own father's arrest at a KKK rally in Queens, NY in the 1920's when his immigrant father protested against things and people the KKK has always protested against. Nor does he want mentioned that his grandfather left Germany in the middle of the night to avoid serving in the military and that his grandfather made over $500,000 running hotels that served often groped women of the night. Or the fact that his billions were earned due to government grants and programs to build low cost housing and was accused of discrimination against black applicants.

  61. People also have the right to not listen to protests. Fans are paying for their entertainment and have every right to ask for that entertainment to be free from political acts they don't want to hear while being entertained. I don't want actors and actresses berating me with personal political messages before a movie starts, my only option would be to leave the theater in order to not listen. It's unfair to your customers. I would prefer the removal of the national anthem prior to sporting events than have to listen to any political messages of the players. I want to be entertained, not lectured.

  62. You mean there's any question that Trump is a race-baiter, a bigot, and invites the support of racists and even outright White Supremacists?

  63. ESPN should change its policies instead of unfairly dismissing Ms. Hill. The network seems to be extremely out of touch with the feelings of its fan base - black and white together - and out of touch with the notion of free speech. As SPBN's successful bullier might tweet, "Pathetic!"

  64. Take the job with TYT. It will make us all happy.

  65. The players should escalate their protest, the cause is just and the method is peaceful.

  66. I would recommend that Ms. Hill be careful about recommending economic boycotts. I watch football to escape from my daily life. If these protests continue, perhaps the next call will be for a boycott of the NFL and all their advertisers. ESPN will wither and end up a shadow of itself without NFL Football.

  67. I'll embrace a boycott of the NFL. College Football is also tainted with monetary fortunes that corrupt any possibly of a straight forward playoff system. Catastrophes like the Penn State scandal happen as a result of protecting the golden egg. Still... college ball is largely about school pride and the no-more-than-four-year careers of the players. Every game counts and the players play with true passion for the sport. For the vast majority, it will be the last time they play. As a spectator, this is far more appealing. So... boycott the NFL. Get your TV football fix by watching college football on Saturday, and mow your grass on Sunday.

  68. She'll probably be fired. She's touching the one sacred aspect of all of this: the cash. Trump is fanning flames of division, and if you're different (not white and straight) in this country, you're always on your heels defending your right to exist. If Ms. Hill and Mr. Smith quiet themselves, they're conspirators in Trump and Mr. Jones' game. How can you ask the hosts on an opinion show to only have an agreeable opinion? Jerry Jones made a mistake, acting like a master of the plantation.

  69. Mind you, that the last president was also divisive. Anyone who disagreed with his policies or methodologies was instantly labeled as a racist, simply for the disagreement. Most Americans do understand the First Amendment and do recognize Ms. Hill's Constitutional rights. What some are missing is that there is no right or guarantee that you will retain popularity or that your job will be protected when you decide to make inflammatory comments. Further, while there is no question that the African American community has been treated particularly badly over the past 400 years of American history, let's not be dishonest. The near extermination of the

  70. ...the near extermination of the native American population is far worse; the incarceration of Asian Americans in American concentration camps during World War Two is worse; and the deliberate hiring and underpayment of undocumented Hispanics and Latinos is worse.

  71. Worse than the deliberate imprisonment, shipment, selling, and forcing to work for free of African Americans? I do not think a comparison of injustices is the right approach here. All injustice is unacceptable. None of these things are okay, but to rank them does a disservice to all involved. Injustices against others do not negate the injustices to African American communities. In fact, they strengthen the argument that we have serious work to do as a country to create a just society.

  72. I’m not sure Jemele Hill is fully aware of whom she works for. Or maybe she doesn’t care if she’s fired, which is where this is headed. She’s not an independent writer in a blog, free to express he opinion without professional repercussions. She’s an employee of ESPN; a private sports network that happens to have a lot invested in professional football. ESPN is also hemorrhaging money, viewers, advertisers, and employees thru reductions in force. Part of that is due to online competition, but many long time ESPN viewers have abandoned the network due to how politicized it has become. ESPN has historically given their on-air talent long leashes to express political opinions. It appears they are trying to change that course for their own survival. This is about money.

  73. As Colin himself has demonstrated, there are ideals worth losing one's job over.

  74. That she's employed to make commentary and hold opinions about sports makes the suspension ironic at best and malicious if interpreted differently. Though ESPN and the NFL have a business relationship, viewers/listeners should hope for some critical commentary from sports anchors about the "product" because it will become less interesting without it. Her comments--in this case--aren't particularly political but more speculation about the impact of an owner's decision on the motivation and potential behavior or men that play for his team. I don't question ESPN's right to suspend her; I question their judgment and wisdom and I'm left feeling confused about why ESPN's expectations for their talent are suddenly so different from mine.

  75. The next time my gf talks about reducing the cable bill, ESPN is definitely on the chopping block. I'm male, white and over 60. I will gladly give up ESPN because management there can't seem to understand that Black Lives Matter.

  76. I lived through the 60's when flag-burning, draft card burning, and street riots were SERIOUS protests. Taking a knee to protest injustice pales in comparison. If anyone wants to take a knee during the Star Spangled Banner, that's their decision and their right. The US Flag and the Anthem guarantee them that right. While I support their Constitutional right to do it, I would ask them one simple question -- Under what circumstances will they resume standing? Until they can answer that question, their protest is just an ambiguous gesture. Jerry Jones and Trump are simply disgusting and don't represent my values. I hope that they get their just rewards. They don't really know what they stand for either.

  77. Yes, they can take a knee while on the job. And their employer can say don't do that again. And when they do it again, they can be fired. Read the First Amendment. It restricts the government's ability to make laws restricting free speech. It does not restrict employers who want to set rules for the workplace, as long as those rules don't violate the law. Restricting political speech at work does not violate the law. And punishing employees who do not have enough common sense to not ask for a boycott of your employer or your employer's customers does not violate the law. If you disagree with your employer's politics or his workplace rules you can always quit and try to find another job.

  78. I guarantee they know their rights greater than any uneducated thug kneeling for the anthem..

  79. The nation will survive, but our culture is currently upside down. When an act of public disrespect is considered respectable and when expecting a show of respect is considered disrespectful, this is where we are. Just as the NFL kneelers have constitutional rights, Hill has a constitutional right to say what she wants. Neither she nor they will be arrested or incarcerated for their acts or her words. But in this nation, there is no guarantee that your words or acts will not be held against you by your employer. As a team owner, Jones has a legal right to run his team as he pleases within the letter of the law. If he is willing to watch his team suffer on the field, that is his prerogative. So long as his players understand the rules and the consequences (by the way, there is a players' code of conduct in the NFL, and standing for the flag, specifically how to do it, and the penalties for not doing it are covered in the document), they have little recourse other than to comply or risk losing their jobs. Ms. Hill has been suspended from ESPN, which is disappointing. ...But let's be clear. Her choice of rhetoric and unrestrained decision to post it on social media is the disappointment. ESPN has a right to police this. Your employer likely has a similar right to monitor your public comments, including your use of social media, provided that they have a detailed policy on the issue, you have received it, and you signed for it. I recommend you see your HR manager for clarity.

  80. I don't know how you can discipline an employee for telling the truth.

  81. Aside from Hill not following the company’s social media policy which is a different matter, in regards to those saying that NFL players are little more than dancing monkeys the question is, is saying the pledge of allegiance work? Can you be compelled to do so as part of your work? Is that not acting if it is compelled as part of a show? How big a step then is it to professional wrestling where it is all an act?

  82. "The players who have protested by sitting or kneeling during the anthem have insisted that they are not disrespecting the flag or the military, but rather trying to raise awareness of police brutality and racial injustice in the United States." I feel that the writers' bias is coming through here, they obviously disagree with this protest. Colin Kaepernick and the other players were very clear from the start that this protest was to bring attention to the issue of police brutality against minorities. When you are the person protesting, you get to decide what you are protesting, you don't have to insist or prove it. I am disappointed in this reporting as this is not an opinion article and it smacks of prejudice to me. Do better.

  83. Find a different time to protest. I don't know how it can't be more obvious that the general public doesn't want them holding the anthem hostage. The Anthem is not the pledge of Allegiance. The flag is only used as a representation to honor those that sacrificed during the Anthem. That is what people want it to be about and nothing else. If they don't like it ,then kneel and deal with the blowback.

  84. She calls out advertisers to boycott the Cowboys and then ESPN suspends her so that advertisers potentially won't boycott them! Can't make this stuff up!!!

  85. Instead of using his office to bring people together, Donald uses the bully pulpit to antagonize and divide our country. He advocates the NFL penalize players who seek to speak out and confront the racial issues that plague our nation. And, who takes the rap for this shameful behavior? A black female ESPN sports commentator? Something is VERY wrong here. Let's not let tRump degrade our flag and our national anthem to achieve his ends. 'Bending the knee' is a simple and elegant protest protected by the first amendment. Let's not forget the man who penned our anthem was a rabid racist. Let's show the world and future generations we're better than this - that our democracy has value.

  86. The players union ought to go on strike. Our Constitution’s First Amendment does not permit an NFL owner to decide which political opinions or their expression of his players. Jerry Jones does not have the power to tell his players which political party, ideas or opinions to express. And saluting the flag or standing for the playing of our National Anthem is not a duty of government. And it’s long overdue for black players to own one or more of the NFL teams so Jerry Jones type white owners can no longer exploit them.

  87. Perhaps you should try reading the First Amendment before making a silly comment about what it says. It specifies that the government shall make no lows ... It says nothing that prohibits a private employer fom abridging speech regarding said employer or while on the job. Employers fire people all the time, on both the left and right, for saying absurd things. Neither Hill nor any of the NFL employees have a specified right to their jobs. If they want to kneel in protest, let them do so in the unemployment line.

  88. So I guess you can go to work and do whatever you want now. No one is saying they cannot express their opinions and decide what political party they can be part of. What is being said is they can't do it at work! I cannot wave Democratic or Republican signs or even have protest sign-ups at work. You need to do this outside of work unless management is okay with it. The NBA has a dress code requiring a suit and tie. It is mandatory. Is this infringing on the players constitutional rights? No. I am amazed that you think these men making millions of dollars a year - more than many will make in a lifetime - are being "exploited". Amazing!

  89. Luxembourg, Desperate moderate,et al: by all means, private businesses have the right to enforce their social codes of employee behavior; and by the same token, black NFL players have the right to defy the codes of the team owners, best through a union job action & if necessary a boycott of what's left of the NFL franchise. The league's ownership needs diversity, & maybe the only way to racially diversify the ownership is, as the saying goes,the "creative destruction" of the present franchise.

  90. Significant change through protest always goes through defilement of those who protest. So, Ms. Hill 'was outside her job' the athletes are 'employees' and do not have a right to protest. Power quashes dissent.

  91. So tell me how this is different and Curt Schilling?

  92. When you hire a sports announcer (as in Sports center) you don't hire a political commontator. You hire a talking head with some flair. I watch to get scores and pictures of action, not political advice. First the media elected to advise rather than report the news, now it's the sports program. Additionally, if the players are really sincere in their protest they ought to be willing to protest by rejecting their wages . I can see it now. "I will not accept the racist money from the white owners. INTEGRITY is the word.

  93. You seem to be missing the point of why the players are kneeling. They are asking the public to recognize that the police are killing unarmed black people and do something about it. Nothing more and nothing less. And an employer does not have the right to take away an employee's first amendment right when they are off the clock. She did not make any comment concerning ESPN.

  94. She may be 'off the clock,' Larry, but how many twitter followers would Ms Hill have if she wen't on ESPN's Sports Center? She may very well have a huge following in her own right, but virtually anything she says on Twitter is going to resonate on ESPN. This was a very foolish move on Ms Hill's part. Now she's entangled herself with the core blood of what makes the whole engine tick: Sponsors. In some cases, employees are never really off the clock.

  95. Curiously absent are all the lectures about how "speech has consequences" that were handed out like candy when Google fired Damore. This is a continuation of far right speech is forbidden, but far left speech must be tolerated. You have to tie yourself into a rationalization knot to support Google's firing and not support ESPN's actions. It is noted that Damore was terminated on first offense for an internal memo and Hill is only being suspended on her second offense for public comments. Berating the NFL and its advertisers that your own company has financial dependence on is clearly crossing the line. Does she not understand that some of the very same advertisers for the Dallas Cowboys also advertise on ESPN and her very own show? Does she not understand that ESPN also shows the Dallas Cowboys from time to time? This isn't a close call, this is pure foolishness from an employee who is giving her employer no choice but to eventually fire her. Everyone eventually understands making your bosses look foolish is a bad career move, the earlier you learn that the better.

  96. Why are employees forced into a political act? The problems begins with having the national anthem sung at a private sporting event. This is injecting politics into sports, and all reactions to it are within the rights of the players. When people are told to respect the flag by force, the real patriots will always refuse. Fascists know this, and use the "disobedience" to further the aims of enforcing political acts of allegiance. Beware lovers of liberty!

  97. The National Anthem is NOT meant to be political. It's simply to honor our country and recognize and respect the solders who died so we can enjoy our freedoms. Anyone who is so arrogant and rebellious that they want to "challenge" the respect of the flag should get out! It's simply. Stand in respect for the soldiers who died for our country.

  98. Explain to me how the flag, which I was taught was a symbol of our country, went from that to a symbol of our military? Because I'm a vet, and I really don't understand this change in view. It kinda sounds like when they added Under God to the pledge in response to those heathen Russians. And yes, I support the players right to peacefully protest.

  99. It is sad that you see the flag and the national anthem as political. Are there competing flags and anthems that the majority of us are not aware of? If so, the military, veterans, first responders, and all level of government in the United States seem to have the same flag and anthem so I think I will pick that side, you know, the one with the flag that covers the coffins of those that fight and die for our inalienable rights, including life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. Oh by the way, the NFL is a workplace and employers do have the right to restrict or prohibit political activities in the workplace. The players can always quit. No one is forcing them to be play football, just like no one is being forced to watch football. Throwing Fascism into this is silly.

  100. And, as I have said before, could someone please tell me how Donald Trump, who has gleefully received THE HITLER SALUTE from American Nazis, be in a position to criticize anyone about a peaceful act of protest that is their constitutionally guaranteed right? It's also the constitutionally guaranteed right of American Nazis to peacefully protest, but I could do without the purported leader of the free world accepting their homage. Then again, he probably doesn't understand that we fought the Axis Powers in WWII.

  101. Trump has changed the argument from one of peaceful protest of America's failure to insure equal rights for all to a question of the protestors' "patriotism", and thus further divide the nation, which is what he's all about. We must remember that patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel and resist his efforts.

  102. In following this protest, I'm afraid I have not learned what its end goal is, specifically. Aside from bringing attention to the broad issue of racial disparity and injustice in America (which most white people seem to deny even exists), what do the protestors and their supporters hope to achieve? Is there a mandate that articulates what actions might be taken to minimize anti-black animus? If so, it seems to have gotten lost in the hysteria on both sides. Where is situation this supposed to lead?

  103. DT should not speak about patriotism when he, during campaign, insulted a the family of a veteran, when he spoke against McCain who is veteran, when he banned people to serve in the military, what kind of patriotism is that?? When I go to church, I either kneel or stand to pray. It doesn't matter to God, cause he sees what is in your heart. The same during the Anthem, what is in the heart is what matters.

  104. I’m with Jemele. Boycott the advertisers. What’s wrong with that honest statement? Nobody is holding a gun to anyine’s head to boycott or not. People know they have the power to boycott. Why punish Jemele for just stating the obvious? This makes ESPN look stupid and unfair. She has a right to free speech. This looks like the “good ‘ole (rich, white) boys club” to me.

  105. I think that would be fair. Some want to boycott the NFL, some want to boycott advertisers, etc. All valid free speech. However, she should have social media accounts clearly separated from her employer's and make it clear that what she writes on her personal accounts are personal opinions and not those of ESPN.

  106. She has an employment agreement. No such thing as unlimited free speech. There are written and unwritten rules in every workplace. She was warned, violated company policies a second time, and was suspended. Particularly when you are urge a boycott of the very advertisers that help pay the bills at ESPN you are sabotaging your employer and asking to be suspended or fired. If she wants to freely speak out she can quit and become a full blown full time social justice warrior. Has noting to do with being unfair or racist when you have an employee trying to drive your company out of business.

  107. I can understand why she was suspended for violating the companies social media policy. However, shouldn't the President be likewise suspended from his job for abuse of social media?

  108. If he had a boss that told him not to do that, then you'd have a point.

  109. In our representative democracy the American people elect a president for a four year term. If people are happy at the end of that term they will reelect him or try some other candidate. In the rest of his term President Trump is entitled to like all Americans to speak or tweet his thoughts, but will be either reelected or rejected by the voters in 2020.

  110. You will have a chance to fire Trump in 2020. That's why we have elections.

  111. I'm confused...I watch a bit of SportsCenter, but my favorite shows (including SC to a degree) are personality-driven talk formats (ESPN 1000, Mike & Mike, His/Hers, PTI, Around the Horn) on which smart people make interesting and sometimes provocative comments. That ESPN has chosen to suspend Ms. Hill for doing just that is ignorant, reactive, and alienating those of us who like to hear debate about ideas in the context of sports. I'm embarrassed for ESPN/Disney and worried that watching/listening might infect me with whatever stupidity has led to this decision. While many people will watch regardless of how they treat Ms. Hill and the message that ESPN sends about interesting, relevant speech, I do think they risk becoming less relevant and even more middle-of-the-road by punishing speech meant to make the world more interesting.

  112. Who cares anyway. It's all about money for ESPN. They wanted Jemele in that slot for her edginess on the issues anyway. Now what ? To edgy ? Oh, better not upset Joe Sixpack, who buys the ImBev beer in the first place. For me, I just don't watch. Just give me the facts (actual games or replays). I don't need "talking heads" for my entertainment. Whether I agree or disagree, they are entitled to express their opinion (which is the truth for them). I also have the right to select different programming.

  113. If every player on the Cowboys took a knee JJ would be in a tough spot. Suspend the entire team? Cancel the season? Cowboy fans all over the country would be outraged. Trump, Penske and JJ would be the bad guys. I love it.

  114. White league owners and white media corporations are seeking to silence some of the few African-Americans who have the visibility and power to publicly challenge white establishment's use of police power against African-Americans. Interestingly, the NFL doesn't seem to have any interest in silencing the opinions of white owners, like Jerry Jones, and ESPN is unlikely to impose a blackout on the views of white NFL owners either. In slow motion, we are perhaps witnessing a watershed moment of consciousness among a young generation of African-Americans who are poised to pickup the mantle of civil rights leaders from generations ago.

  115. Black players and liberal progressive media are seeking to silence the football fan’s demands for the entertainment for which they pay millions of dolllars every year. The fans don’t want to be insulted for being patriotic and expecting patriotism. The thought processes similar to those of these black football players and the liberal media, designed to silence the white middle class, caused a watershed moment last November, with the election of Trump.

  116. Say what you want but be prepared to accept the consequences. That said, Donald Trump should do his job and stop tweeting about ESPN, the NFL and other things that are irrelevant to the office of the Presidency.

  117. Have respect for our new president Trump. Pray for him. Support him. Find ways to HELP him. Stop the insults. It just creates more divide.

  118. The Dolphins’ owner... told The Miami Herald that while many players insist their protests are about raising awareness of social injustice, the president has “changed that whole paradigm of what protest is” by turning it into a proxy for respect for the flag and support of the military. We should not allow appropriate, necessary and fair conversations to be hijacked.

  119. It is time for the NFL to bring this silliness to a halt. I am one of millions of Americans who tune into NFL games to watch athletes perform at what they do best; not to hear their political views. Imagine going into a clothing store and having the clerk refuse to retrieve a garment in your size before first being forced to hear her views on some social issue. This is the identical situation. The politically correct leaders of the NFL have allowed this issue to get out of hand by stupidly buying into the ESPN meme that this is somehow a first amendment issue. The league would be fully within its rights to inform the players that the workplace cannot be used as a platform for social protest, while giving the players full scope to express their views elsewhere and on their own time. As for ESPN and Ms. Hill, the network has a business decision on its hands. The vast majority of viewers have grown tired of the ego-maniacal rants of sports commentators trying to persuade themselves and us that they are brilliant journalists and social activists. By and large, they are a group of public policy wannabes, completely un-equipped to weigh in on important matters of state. They are boring us! People are tuning out! Ms. Hill wants to bring economic pain to Jerry Jones. Well perhaps she is about to find out that indulging her politics might not be worth the economic pain ESPN will suffer by continuing to employ her. Enough!

  120. @AR Clayboy: Not only isn't your analogy the identical issue, isn't particularly accurate. This is a silent protest, not one that requires any of your time. And why isn't an African-Americans athlete qualified to protest the treatment of African-Americans in the U.S.? Who was Rosa Parks before she refused to sit in the back of a bus?

  121. How come these same players didn't kneel, etc. before Trump was POTUS? If I remember correctly. Travon Martin and Michael Brown were shot before he was POTUS.

  122. No you do not remember correctly. First, Colin Kaepernick began his protest last year, and other players joined him over the past season. Second, this had nothing to do with Trump until Trump injected himself into this protest for the express purpose of making it a wedge issue. What does that say about Trump?

  123. They have been kneeling since last year, remember Kapernick?

  124. Do I agree with everything the flag stands for? That depends on how one defines what the flag stands for. If it stands for victory in the revolutionary war which distanced us from an oppressor, then I agree. if the flag represents our current Federal Administration, led by a president who coddles white supremicists, is himself a racist and misogynist, then I disagree with what it stands for. One thing I do know, I could care less how one behaves at the national anthem. It is not my problem as long as they are allowing me the space to stand and honor, if that's what I want to do. What they do is a reflection of them, and they should be allowed to do so in this free (for now) country.

  125. You see that less and less are kneeling. Could it be possible that the bling is more important than their principles?? Looks like these players are selling out for more money!!!

  126. Really? You went there? You do realize, that before Trump opened his mouth, there were only 10 players protesting. It's directly his fault for the increase, and appears to be slowly heading back to the original number.

  127. I hope those attending football games will also start kneeling in support !

  128. Mike Pence’s presence wouldn’t and couldn’t dignify the dedication of a new landfill in Bayonne.

  129. nice work espn, but what was your reasoning for firing curt schilling, why not just a suspension? I think i know why...

  130. AT&T Stadium cost a reported $1.8 billion, and no doubt someone still owes hundreds of million in debt on those construction costs, possibly including Jerry Jones himself. So lets get real, unless Jones thinks he has the financial wherewithal to outlast a motivated generation of African-American players, Jones is not going to risk a course of action that could see his steep financial investment become mired in a bankruptcy reorganization should he and/or his team miss its financial commitments.

  131. In an op-ed, Kashana Cauley writes "N.F.L. players [are] objecting to the obscenely high number of unarmed black people brutalized and killed by police officers in the United States." A serious this "obscenely high" number higher than the number of "blacks" killed by other "blacks"? The high profile deaths that gave birth to the Black Lives Matter movement are horrifying individually and collectively, but are shootings by police the main quality of life issue "blacks" should be addressing? I think Kaepernick had a broader focus, including mass incarceration, which includes the court and prison systems. I'm sorry to see this reduced to the issue of police shootings and to be diminished into a battle of egos and personalities.

  132. Readers (and NYTimes) appear outraged about Hill claiming it's all the fault of Trump and/or his tweets. She had a warning, and agreed she was out of line making a bad choice. Then she did it again. This isn't about race, as the NYTs tried to subtlety insert. It isn't about right vs. left. It's about rules of employment. We all have them, and we all know the line that will get us fired (or suspended). Nothing to do with Trump. She was wrong.

  133. Part of the problem is that media types are expected to develop a social media following and the way to do that isn't by being even handed and deliberative. Hill went too far with her "white supremacist" tweet, and we know that she knows that because she tried to hide behind it being her "personal" account. Everyone in the media business and in sports is involved in building a personal brand. [[Hill suggested on Twitter that fans who disagreed with Jones’s stance should boycott Cowboys advertisers.]] You shouldn't need a social media policy to know that as an employee making such a call is way, way above your pay grade and that there are probably pending deals you don't know about hat could be adversely impacted by your flippant remark. Also, what happens when the president calls for a boycott of your company's advertisers? I think Hill probably is ready to get out of sports coverage and go into the world of punditry, which is wonderful because God knows we don't have enough pundits in this world.

  134. If one of a team's employment policies was don't make political statements while in uniform there would be no first amendment issue, just a policy enforcement issue. The original intent of the protest is getting lost. And I cringe every time I hear a rich white guy referred to as an "owner" in this discussion of protesting black oppression.

  135. I'm not feeling bad for her although I am not offended by her position. Someone is losing their job over that Dove commercial which was not racist but social media activists intentionally manipulated what the commerical was like to give a false impression and generate outrage. I see people lose their jobs constantly over minor slights towards blacks while far more abusive rhetoric by blacks gets a free pass. The issue here is a power struggle between two groups that need to get a life. The problems of blacks won't go away by guilting white people constantly and the Trump administration seems petty beyond belief for continuing to add fuel to the fire.

  136. Ironic that she's being suspended in part for an "impulsive tweet " More than half the country, and much of the world, wish the same standards were applied to this "president ".

  137. Trump has successfully changed the issue from police brutality to respect for military. He is a con man through and through.

  138. smart guy isn't he? Don't underestimate The Donald, no matter how crass he is.

  139. I won't try to speak for players who kneel but as someone who has been in a couple protests and doesn't like it - because people do have differing reasons, because I have a job, because I don't like standing out, because I hope my writing helps but is less likely to put me on the wrong side of pepper spray, sticks, cuffs, fines and jail - I respect their having done it and if they continue, that's fine but if they don't, they've tried to say something and that's fine, too. I don't want to play "How come they didn't do it sooner or longer or differently". I have watched for years now as people of color are hunted by police. Trayvon was hunted by George whatzisname, held down and shot point blank on the ground. I can't say what kind of young man Michael Brown was but he is "was" because that cop emptied an entire clip at him. The officer's superiors hid him and didn't release his name and wouldn't prosecute. That's what this is about - not once but many times repeated around the country. The names of the victims, of the lynched, whether by police or not, need a big memorial because tee shirts don't cut it. This country should put the name of a victim on every seat in every stadium, in memory. When people, from Trump and Pence on down, sit at a game, they should have to look at the name of a victim. Let them stand for the anthem and then they'll see those names again.

  140. Everybody has a right to speak their mind, but nobody has the right to a platform at an event that others pay to attend. To vent ones opinion at such an event is harassment. The people who have paid for their entrance should be entitled to a refund. The taxpayers that funded the stadiums these games are played in should sue the NFL. While people who watch ESPN can change the channel, they can and should call their cable provider and delete the channel if they are offended. Congress should make municipal bonds funding Stadiums taxable at the same rate as corporations. The first amendment should stand but those who incorrectly try to hide behind it should be ashamed.

  141. This woman is brilliant. Vote with your pocket book and boycott Cowboy advertisers. You can't shut down this conversation by firing a woman excersizing her right to free speech.

  142. Another self-righteous personality looking for the me-too Spotlight. She got what she deserved, she has no particular talent that will be missed

  143. I support her. She's right - boycott advertisers! Potus says boycott the games so why cant she say same.

  144. This all started with CNN's 24 hour coverage of the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson Missouri. The network spread a false narrative of an innocent man saying "hands up, don't shoot" In fact, Brown was a criminal who attempted to steal a police officers gun. It is truly comical that this debate is happening in the NFL, a league that has a long history of employing criminals, sexual predators and men who abuse women. No wonder they hate police officers.

  145. If black NFL players truly want to make a difference, they can begin by involving themselves in poor black communities where black boys are at great risk of dropping out of high school and entering the juvenile and subsequent adult prison system at an early age. They can begin by funding socio-economic interventions in these communities to create opportunities for young black boys that don't have any and often resort to crime. They can begin by marrying black women and keeping their wealth in the black community. Bending a knee looks good and it feels good, but at the end of the day it gets nothing done. This is my 3rd attempt to make this point but the liberal NYTimes staff continues to delete it. I am a black liberal, single mother, who despite poverty, has reared a young black boy into manhood. He is a full time student at UIC. My voice deserves to be heard.

  146. you tell "em mom! We need more voices like yours,

  147. Charles Johnson Foundation (Carolina) provides opportunities for underserved youth through athletic, recreational and educational programs and initiatives, support for single African-American mothers through proven programs and initiatives. Arizona - Patrick Peterson Foundation for Success installed eleven ‘Patrick’s Corners’. to provide low-income & inner city youth with opportunities and resources... Chicago Bears - Brandon Marshall PROJECT BORDERLINE - raising awareness for Borderline Personality Disorder, providing access to resources. Ndamukong Suh Family Foundation - create success in underprivileged communities through charities and fundraisers. The Jackson in Action Foundation (Tampa Bay) - making the lives of veterans and the families of veterans easier following war-time stress. Larry Fitzgerald (Arizona)- The First Down Fund - give children an opportunity to play sports, supports families in crisis with health and financial support.  Carolina: Thomas Davis Defending Dreams Foundation, providing disadvantaed youth with opportunities and resources, etc. Cam Newton Foundation, Michael Oher Beat The Odds, Russell Wilson visits children at Seattle Children's Hospital. "Why Not You" foundation supports various children's causes, etc. The San Francisco 49ers Foundation - programs for youth since 1991, donated $40 million & over 400 hours of service. 49ers Pierre Garçon - foundation assisted education, health, community in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.

  148. If ESPN has the guts (highly doubt it) they will fire her. She is a racist. Those who don't stand for the flag should be boycotted, their advertisers should be boycotted. Anyone who hires Jemele Hill should be boycotted.

  149. Indeed. She is a racist.

  150. ESPN has realized what the NFL is beginning to realize, that mouths like Jemel Hill’s and kneeling football players are free to do what they want, but their customers don’t want the Hill’s and kneeling football players to spoil the entertainment products sports fans buy. And in the end, the kneeling football players and Hill are going to pay, or ESPN and the NFL will pay. Guess who is going to prevail if patriotic Americans start walking away from their TV sets, like they have been recently? Trump wins this one, in a huge way.

  151. Power hates to hear truth. Tell it, Jemele!

  152. So happy DirecTV has a package that does not carry ESPN. Don't want my money going to a network that no longer has sports reporting, and just in it for the entertainment. Started with Tebow coverage and Bayless.. She should not have attacked her employer's paycheck (in turn, where she gets her paycheck). She is neither a serious sports or investigative reporter. If she truly believes so passionately that POTUS is white supremacist, then go do an investigative report! If she is a "social advocate", then how many rallies has she had? How many lawmakers has she contacted? Has she started any petitions for either reforming the system or getting new elected officials in? With about 50 % of the voters NOT voting at the last election, there is a lot of advocate room here!

  153. Trump lets the whole country down with an impulsive tweet almost every day, yet Jones has failed to call him out for dog whistling his white supremacist bile to the base. Trump dodged the draft, his patriotism is a facade.ESPN should take a knee and use "social media" standards in a socially responsible way.

  154. Not even sure this blowhard can fire anyone for this. They have a collective bargaining agreement. It would be interesting to see what it says.

  155. I doubt Jemima Hill is a member of a union. Thus, it is her contract, and whether her employer chooses to enforce her contract.

  156. Just another reason I refuse to subscribe to cable where I can't pick and choose my channels. Aside from the fact I have ZERO interest in sports, I don't want to my subscription paying for a channel that censors valid opinions. Of course, I'm sure this has nothing to do with advertiser revenue.

  157. I used to ask students in a university journalism class: "Who owns freedom of the press?" The chorus would respond: "We all do." or "The people do." or "All of the people." Not. Freedom of the press -- and, by extension, freedom of ESPN -- belongs to those who own the press. It's that simple. It's a business, and those who own the business have every right to decide what is being said under their nameplate. Ms. Hill knew, or at least she should have known, when she signed on to ESPN that she lost a bit of self in the deal. ESPN gives her the platform, but it is still ESPN doing the talking. She represents more than self to the world, and her speech becomes more than her own. She must know this. This is a special identity relationship that journalists (or sportscasters) share with their employers. Would anyone pay much attention to Ms. Hill's remarks were she not an ESPN presenter? Perhaps, for she surely has the talent to have succeeded in another field. But she didn't go elsewhere.

  158. I think Jemele Hill is incredibly brave and incredibly important to what is going on in civil rights right now. She's already so strong, but I hope to support her in any way I can.

  159. There is nothing new about “taking the knee” or some similar action to point out the inequities that many felt the government was subjecting them to. In 1773 many people took a knee(in effect) when the British were treating them unfairly and the result was the United States of America. It took time but the actions of the Boston Tea Party eventually created a country where such actions are sometimes still the only way to draw attention to things that our country needs to correct. The taking a knee is not the wrong thing, it is the injustice. So I don’t buy into this fake patriotism where people think waving the flag or having two flags ripping apart as they hang them from their car windows makes them patriotic. This does not make this country better. Yes we are a great country, but we still have long way to go when it comes to race matters. This is what the “taking the knee” is about. And yes people died to make sure these athletes(and others) are able to speak out about their need to be treated equally. These are the real patriots. Truly loving your country is wanting to make it better...

  160. I'd prefer to think of her as an ignorant dope, rather than fire off an expletive. Suspension is not sufficiently punitive. At age 41, her behavior is remarkable.

  161. I hope the Cowboy players have a locker room meeting and agree to all take the knee at the next game. The legality of "White Only" drinking fountains ended 6 decades ago (if not in reality in Texas, Miss , Alabama , etc.). Time to get on right side of history. Jerry Jones is the Harvey Weinstein of NFL owners.