From the ESPN.com's ombudsman's page
.With the notable exception of ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd, ESPN's commentators did better than many in the mainstream media at reining in the impulse to speculate, pontificate and prematurely assign responsibility for Taylor's death. Cowherd, however, trusted his "gut feeling" to guide him to "the truth." His gut told him that Taylor's "history of really, really bad judgment, really really bad judgment" had caught up with him, and even if the emerging reports that Taylor had "cleaned up his act" were true, "Well, yeah, just because you clean the rug doesn't mean you got everything out. Sometimes you've got stains, stuff so deep it never ever leaves."
Most other ESPN commentators seemed to understand that when it comes to race, crime and sports, the last source to be trusted is one's gut, which tends to be lined with bilious stereotypes and prejudices. Some commentators, including Michael Wilbon of "Pardon The Interruption," admitted to not being surprised by the shooting, of suspecting a link to Taylor's past associates or enemies, but they aired their presumptions tentatively, with sadness or anger at the "senseless death" of yet another young black man, not in the gloating, know-it-all voice that many of Cowherd's listeners called "appalling" and "indecent" in their e-mails to me.
I listened to this segment of Cowherd's show, because I am a masochist. And trust me, the people calling in were (conservatively) 70% racists. One kept intentionally stressing the "po" part of "police," in a snarling, derisive tone. Cowherd did little or nothing to call them out.
You're allowed to say pretty much whatever you want in this country, despite some ESPN employees' best efforts
. But if you do, I get to call you a bonehead. Ergo, Colin Cowherd: you are a bonehead. Even your own ombudsman says so.
Labels: colin cowherd, ombudsman