MEDIA/RACISM/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The president said on Twitter on Friday [9-15-17] morning that ESPN ‘is paying a really big price for its politics (and bad programming). People are dumping it in RECORD numbers. Apologize for untruth.’
He was apparently referring to ESPN anchor Jemele Hill, who in a recent tweet said that ‘Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.’
Hill’s assertion caused an uproar, particularly in conservative media circles, where ESPN’s political bent has been a point of contention for years.
Wall Street analysts and ESPN executives generally agree that ESPN’s subscriber losses are primarily a result of cost-conscious consumers and a changing business model.
But the president, through his tweet on Friday, sided with the conservative commentators who say it’s really liberal bias that is poisoning ESPN and dragging down the business.
His call for an apology is also noteworthy. Hill addressed the controversy earlier this week, but pointedly did not apologize for her ‘white supremacist’ statement. She only expressed regret for painting ESPN in an unfair light.
ESPN said in a followup statement that the network accepted her apology.
The network clearly wants to move on — but Trump might make that more difficult.”
-Chris Isidore and Brian Stelter, “Trump attacks ESPN after anchor calls him a white supremacist,” CNN Media, CNN.com, Sept. 15, 2017 09:02am