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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, April 22, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 17
ESPN fires Curt Schilling for transphobic tweet
Section One
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ESPN fires Curt Schilling for transphobic tweet

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

ESPN has fired All-Star pitcher and high-profile sports analyst Curt Schilling after he reposted a crude anti-Trans meme on his Facebook page and added offensive commentary of his own.

Schilling had worked for the sports network since 2010 and was a fixture on Monday Night Baseball.

The image Schilling reposted showed an individual intended to be read as a man, dressed in disheveled women's clothes and a blond wig, with the caption 'LET HIM IN! to the restroom with your daughter or else you're a narrow-minded, judgmental, unloving, racist bigot who needs to die.'

To that, Schilling added: 'A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don't care what they are, who they sleep with, men's room was designed for the penis, women's not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic.'

'ESPN is an inclusive company,' the network said in a statement. 'Curt Schilling has been advised that his conduct was unacceptable, and his employment with ESPN has been terminated.'

It was not the first time Schilling's right-wing views got him into trouble with ESPN. Last August the company suspended him for a month for a tweet comparing Muslims to Nazis.

Schilling describes himself on his Facebook account as a 'conservative pro life pro 2nd amendment American who wants to help those that cannot help themselves.'

In March Schilling said in a radio interview that Hillary Clinton 'should be buried under a jail somewhere' because she allegedly jeopardized security by using a private email server.

While Schilling refused to talk to the New York Times about his latest run-in with the network, he did post a defense on his personal blog.

'Let's make one thing clear right upfront,' he wrote. 'If you get offended by ANYTHING in this post, that's your fault, all yours.

'This latest brew ha ha [sic] is beyond hilarious. I didn't post that ugly picture. I made a comment about the basic functionality of men's and women's restrooms, period,' he added.

Schilling also appeared on an April 20 radio show to defend himself.

'I replied to the post. I didn't post that,' Schilling told WEEI radio in Boston.

'To be in a place where people actually believe I'm a racist or I'm transphobic says to me that something has gone horribly askew somewhere,' he added.

Media analysts said the network had few options other than firing Schilling.

'If you're taking a paycheck from ESPN, you have to be extra careful about how you communicate publicly and always err on the side of caution and responsibility,' said James Andrew Miller, a co-author of Those Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN.

'It's not an unfair or impractical position for ESPN to hold. If you want to express your own opinions in a provocative way on social media, then ESPN and a lot of other media organizations are probably not where you should be working.'

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4th Circuit says schools must let Trans students use restrooms appropriate for their gender identity

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ESPN fires Curt Schilling for transphobic tweet
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