After a controversial exit from ESPN, journalist Jemele Hill is set to launch her own podcast, with co-hosts writer Michael Arceneaux and renowned screenwriter/producer Cole Wiley. The podcast, “Jemele Hill is Unbothered,” will focus on a wide array of topics, including the politicization of sports. It will be produced in partnership with
“From a value alignment standpoint, that’s something I stand for–boosting the voices of young women of color—it’s something they stand for,” Hill told Black Enterprise. “And I’m happy to be a part of a brand where we are very like-minded.”
Hill is moving on after 12 years with ESPN, which ended with much controversy.
“On September 13, 2017, Jemele Hill found herself among the growing list of journalists targeted by President Donald Trump and the White House. The reason: Hill, an anchor of ESPN’s ‘SportsCenter’ at the time, had tweeted criticism of Trump, calling him a white supremacist,” Elle reported.
Following this, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders publicly called Hill’s tweet “a fireable offense.” In turn, ESPN issued a statement that it did not share its anchor’s views.
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Hill now seems ready to take on the touchy issues with her upcoming podcast, including the connection of politics and sports.
“People who would prefer that they be separate clearly don’t recognize that sports have always been tied to social issues,” Hill told Elle. “Jackie Robinson integrated Major League Baseball in 1947, almost 20 years before the Civil Rights Act passed. The moment you go to an NFL game, it is inherently political. You have the national anthem, flyovers, a military presence. Those are all political symbols. Also, every time they put up a new stadium or arena, who do they come to for the money? Taxpayers.”
She continued: “So I think that people who don’t want politics in sports are just being, frankly, intellectually lazy. They just don’t want politics they disagree with in their sports. There are so many examples of non-sports issues mixing with sports. ESPN has done some incredible fundraising for cancer. I don’t hear anybody say ‘stick to sports’ when that happens. But when it’s Colin Kaepernick, racism, or police brutality, then they want to stick to sports. That has more to do with the subject than them wanting sports to be absent of heavier issues.”
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