Obviously the political pressure has increased significantly on ESPN regarding this matter. Enough so that ESPN has now doubled back on its "policy" of not commenting on personnel matters. I wonder if Jacobson's gender has anything to do with this given ESPN's less than stellar history with gender relations.
Regardless, I have learned that Bill Donohue considers the matter over.
ESPN has mollified the Catholic attack dog. And, I have also learned that ESPN will be meeting with the Christian Defense Coalition on Friday after the group protested ESPN corporate HQ in Bristol, Connecticut. This information comes from an email from ESPN Ombudsman Le Anne Schreiber sent to me by a reader.
On January 22, I said in a news release that ‘there is no evidence that ESPN is taking this matter seriously.’ I am happy to say that after speaking to two ESPN officials today, and having learned more about exactly what happened, that the are in fact taking this matter seriously. Indeed, I am convinced that what occurred at the roast will not happen again.
To be sure, Jacobson’s remarks were patently offensive; no one involved in this incident, including her, is maintaining otherwise. But it is also true that there is no evidence that what we are dealing with is a bigot—lots of people who have made bigoted comments are not inveterate bigots. No, what we are dealing with is a person who went off the rails while drunk at a raucous event. “The ESPN officials whom I spoke to answered the questions I had to my satisfaction. Therefore, as far as the Catholic League is concerned, this matter is over.
So, what have we learned today? ESPN will cave to political pressure and violate its own policies on personnel matters. Any way Jesse Jackson can get righteous and indignant about Harold Reynolds's situation so we can get more information?