Another from the backlog is the story about college football analyst Craig James, and that he was fired by FOX over anti-gay comments. How you bill that story is up to you. For WND, the headline was, “Famous Sportscaster Fired for Anti-‘Gay’ Comments.” In most other places, such as Edge: New England, we get the headline, “Fox Drops Sports Broadcaster Craig James for Anti-Gay Remarks.”
See a bit of difference there? Besides the usual need to put ‘gay’ in single quotes, WND inserted the adjective “famous” in the title that most other news outlets did not. In doing so, they have elevated James and made this even more of an outrageous offense by the Big Gay lobby group.
The quote in question is this, made during a GOP primary debate when James was criticizing Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert for riding in a gay pride parade: “I think right now in this country, our moral fiber is sliding down a slope that is going to be hard to stop if we don’t stand up with leaders who don’t go ride in gay parades. I can assure you I will never ride in a gay parade.” He continued, “I think that you have to make that choice. But in that case right there, they are going to have to answer to the Lord for their actions. We should not give benefits to those civil unions.”
My commentary is that even Fox, about as right-wing as the Daily Mail is tabloid journalism, recognizes that a growing number of people support same-sex rights and are not bigots. Sure, Fox still have plenty of bigots on staff that get daily speaking spots. But even Fox recognizes that if they continue, they’re going to lose – or at least not gain – any viewers. And if it’s not a major loss to the network to not have one extra sportscaster, then get rid of him.
Or, you could go the way of WND commenters like “Pi10107” who wrote, “No more freedom of speech for the moral people.”
Or “SATCitizen” who doesn’t realize that the right to free speech exists, but that people have a right to execute consequences in reaction to that free speech: “Discrimination is Craig James’ First Amendment rights being trampled on by those who can’t stand to hear the truth. That’s why all of this is a sad day in heII.”
Edited to Add (Oct. 9, 2013): It appears as though James is suing FOX to get his job back. He gave a very lengthy interview to WND, and it was published with the headline, “Fired Sports Star Unleashes on FOX” (probably not the best way to make them like you again). I don’t know any details of the lawsuit or if its even been filed, but I would guess he will be very unsuccessful. In the US, we do not have a right to work or a right for a company to not fire you.