Jemele Hill’s Politics: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know
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Jemele Hill’s Politics: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Jemele Hill Trump, Jemele Hill ESPN, Jemele Hill Sportscenter Getty

Jemele Hill in September 2016.

Jemele Hill, the outspoken host of ESPN’s 6:00 p.m. SportsCenter, called President Donald Trump a “white supremacist” on Twitter. ESPN later posted a statement, saying her comments “do not represent the position of ESPN” and she knows her comment was “inappropriate.” The White House called Hill’s comments a “fireable offense.”

The 41-year-old Hill has been hosting the 6:00 edition of SportsCenter, dubbed SC6 with Michael Smith since February. Hill and Smith previously co-hosted Numbers Never Lie and His & Hers before they were promoted to the flagship show.

You can follow Hill on Twitter.

Here’s what you need to know about Hill’s politics and her latest brush with controversy.


1. Hill Called Trump a ‘White Supremacist’ After Posting About Kid Rock

Jemele Hill Trump, Jemele Hill ESPN, Jemele Hill Sportscenter

GettyJemele Hill in 2017.

Hill’s tweet about Trump was posted late on September 11 after she retweeted a The Hill article about musician Kid Rock, who has been teasing a run for Michigan Senator after launching KidRockforSenate.com in July. The article is about Rock’s long Facebook post about the “extreme left.” ““Pretty funny how scared I have them all and their only agenda is to try and label people / me racist who do not agree or cower to them,” Rock wrote.

“He loves black people so much that he pandered to racists by using a flag that unquestionably stands for dehumanizing black people,” Hill wrote, referring to the singer’s use of the Confederate Battle flag.

After a back-and-forth with other Twitter users, Hill wrote, “Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.”

Hill also tweeted other messages about Trump. “He is unqualified and unfit to be president. He is not a leader. And if he were not white, he never would have been elected. He has surrounded himself with white supremacists — no they are not “alt right” — and you want me to believe he isn’t a white supremacist?”

She went on, “Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy. Period. The height of white privilege is being able to ignore his white supremacy, because it’s of no threat to you. Well, it’s a threat to me.”

“Donald Trump is a bigot. Glad you could live with voting for him. I couldn’t, because I cared about more than just myself,” she wrote.

After the tweet gained attention in the conservative media, ESPN issued a statement.

“The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the President do not represent the position of ESPN,” the statement reads. “We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate.”

Hill has continued to Tweet, but on other subjects.


2. Hill Has Tweeted About Politics Before, Despite ESPN’s 2016 Memo Asking Talent Not to Tweet About Politics

Jemele Hill Trump, Jemele Hill ESPN, Jemele Hill Sportscenter

GettyJemele Hill and Michael Smith.

Hill has made her politics clear on her Twitter page. She has a tweet with photos of her 2015 and 2016 visits to the White House to meet President Barack Obama pinned to her page. Twitter users frequently complain to her, and she typically responds.

In January 2016, ESPN issued a memo to employees to avoid making political comments. Since then, Sage Steele lost a hosting position after writing that she was sad to see the “joy” in the faces of anti-Trump protesters. Curt Schilling was famously fired in April 2016 for an offensive post about transgender people.

After the Pulse nightclub shootings in Orlando in June 2016, when a man killed 49 people inside a gay nightclub, Hill wrote, “So in a country where we have done everything possible to undermine the LGBTQ community, we are suddenly lecturing Islam on homophobia. Oh.”

Forbes asked ESPN PR why Hill wasn’t fired after that message. A spokesperson told the magazine that Hill’s statement wasn’t a violation of the 2016 memo.


3. Hill Defended Politics Appearing on ESPN, Saying ‘Athletes Are Dragging Us Here’

ESPN has been dealing with subscriber losses for some time, and its apparent liberal slant on politics has taken the blame in the media. Conservatives point to Schilling’s firing and Caitlyn Jenner receiving the Arthur Ashe courage award in 2015 as examples. Not firing Hill for her comments will certainly not help. SportCenter‘s Linda Cohn also admitted that politics are hurting ESPN.

During a conference in June, Hill defended the coverage of political topics, noting that the athletes they cover have made it difficult to avoid politics.

“I just hadn’t noticed the correlation between us being called more liberal as you see more women in a position on our network… as you see more ethnic diversity, then all of a sudden ESPN is too liberal. So I wonder, when people say that, what they’re really saying,” Hill said, reports Yahoo News. “The other part of it is that we’re journalists, and people have to understand, these uncomfortable political conversations… the athletes are dragging us here.”

Hill continued, noting that they never asked Colin Kaepernick to kneel during the national anthem and they didn’t expect Gregg Popovich to go off on Donald Trump during press conferences.

“You have athletes saying they’re going to the White House, not going to the White House, that’s all sports news,” Hill continued. “It didn’t just start with this generation of athletes, it’s always been that way. Sometimes when I hear a viewer say they don’t want their politics mixed with sports, I say, ‘What did you think about Muhammad Ali?’ And then all of a sudden it’s glowing praise.”

Hill made similar comments in an interview with Newsday.

“Whether we want to discuss it or not, athletes are dragging us into these conversations,” Hill said in January. “It’s not that Mike and I wake up one day and say, ‘Hey, today we’re going to be MSNBC.’ It’s usually based off a news story that is relevant to sports.”


4. Hill Joined ESPN in 2006 As a Columnist & Mentioned Race in Her Columns

Hill has been at ESPN since 2006, when she joined EPSN.com as a columnist. Over time, she began appearing on ESPN TV shows, including First Take, Outside the Lines and others. A short time after she was hired, she spoke with the Columbia Journalism Review about being a young, black female journalist and the reaction you get when you write about race.

“Any time you write about race, people get incensed,” Hill said in 2006. “I recently wrote a column saying that there is just as much evidence against Lance Armstrong as there is [against] Barry Bonds, and part of the reason there is this extraordinary benefit of the doubt extended to Lance is because he’s white. That’s not the overwhelming reason, mind you. Just a factor in the whole equation. I got a ton of mail about that one, even though I posed the racial element in the next-to-last graf of the column.”

In 2011, she started the His & Hers podcast with Michael Smith, which soon replaced Smith’s Numbers Never Lie in 2013. They continued hosting the show until they moved to SportsCenter. Their part of the show is known as SC6 With Michael And Jemele.

The Los Angeles Times reported in March that Smith and Hill signed new contracts, even as ESPN had its massive lay-off earlier this year. Hill told Dan Patrick that their contracts weren’t up for another year when they were approached to host SC6.

“The fact that they asked us to do this, that’s a key part of it. This was not our plan. We were about a year out from our contract being up,” Hill said in January. “We knew that they liked us and wanted us to keep doing our thing. We were of the mentality that we were just going to be His and Hers. And what were things that were needed to improve that? And the way it just kind of happened caught us by surprise.”


5. Hill Was Suspended in 2008 for Writing That Rooting for the Celtics Would Be Like ‘Saying Hitler Was a Victim’

In 2008, Hill had her first brush with controversy at ESPN. The Detroit native compared rooting for the Boston Celtics instead of the Pistons to “saying Hitler was a victim.”

“Rooting for the Celtics is like saying Hitler was a victim. It’s like hoping Gorbachev would get to the blinking red button before Reagan. Deserving or not, I still hate the Celtics,” Hill wrote.

Hill was suspended for a week and the statement was taken out of her column. She also wrote an apology.

However, this was actually just the start of another controversy, as ESPN’s Lou Holtz made a similar remark later that year. He apologized too, but wasn’t suspended. In an interview with Deadspin, Hill shrugged it off.

“Many have said that ESPN treated me unfairly. The 64,000 question: How do I really feel? My initial answer is a story, or rather, a moment,” she told Deadspin in 2008. “A couple years ago, I was visiting the Poynter Institute, one of the foremost journalism think tanks in the country, and I sat in on a session taught by one of my favorite columnist and people, the Washington Post’s Sally Jenkins. A student asked her if she ever got upset when other writers rewarded — particularly if she knew they weren’t as good. And Sally said — and I’m paraphrasing here — that she always prided herself on keeping her eyes on her own career. That’s my answer. That’s how I feel.”

54 Comments

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54 Comments

Robot

Ghetto Trash. ESPN and the NFL will continue to lose money kowtowing to these racist pieces of garbage

Reply
Anonymous

Ghetto Trash…ESPN and NFL will continue to lose money kowtowing to these racist pieces of garbage

Reply
PAX

Agree or disagree…right or wrong…it’s just one person expressing an opinion(s). Don’t like it, don’t watch.

Reply
PAX

If that’s the case programming and personnel changes are imminent. If Jemele Hill is deemed responsible in part, she will be gone based on those ratings.

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Jim Evans

I have said this before and will say it again. Any time people don’t agree with the Left Wingers, be they be Democrats or Republicans, then they are members of the KKK, Neo-Nazis or they are White Supremacists, because that is all they know what to say. This has been proven to be true over and over.

Reply
Joe Sulliv

Jemele Hill is really Rob Parker in drag. She/He always gets a pass on racist comments because black women can do no wrong in liberals eyes. Her show with Michael Smith showed exactly why her race is the only reason she has her job.

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Dan Zarvas

She’s just a no talent black supremacist with a microphone. The bottom line is that she hates anything that is even remotely affiliated with “white culture”. I am sure that ESPN was well aware of her political stance, so her mouth’s diarrhea was not a surprise. ESPN can keep their apology in the same toilet bowl that this racist black’s comments reside in. I guess this is just more of the “content of character” that the average person has come to expect from the average black. She should shut her mouth before she trips on her lips and injures herself.

Reply
Rob

She suggests Kid Rock culturally appropriates black rap style in his music. Someone ought to ask her ‘ Who’s culture are you trying to appropriate with that straight hair, Becky?’

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JOE CATULLO

is it any wonder why there still remains so much anti-black feelings in this country, its because of two-bit black BITCHES like this one, the only reason she has the job, is for political correctness, she needs to be fired!! have a nice day.

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Suzzzi

Poor Trump! Truth hurts. I hope they try to fire her & she sues – then all the evidence showing Trump as a white supremacist can be legally presented to the public.

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Anonymous

What a JOKE! When she calls someone white supremists they look into her politics. If someone called bama a nig they be gone so fast they would be gone so fast they would leave their shoes behind.

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Doug Thomas

So long ESPN. I want sports and only sports not misinformed/ignorant political rants. Count me in on the “former viewer ” side.

Reply
ESPN

Sorry about that!! We’ll leave the misinformed/ignorant political rants for the current president. 👋

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Gary Attardo

Good Bye ESPN. I have been a loyal viewer since the inception in the early 80’s, when sports reporting was real sports journalism. Hill is a disgrace to all reporters and commentators on ESPN. Be proud of your hired employees. They will surely put the lights out for ESPN. I do like the diversity of the Female Hosts and journalists.
Good Bye ESPN. You lost me as a loyal viewer.

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Miki Smith

Stopped watching totally after Espy awards gave Bryce Jenner most courageous athlete. This PC network is self destructing. Keep peroe like this uninformed idiot and you will continue to go down. You fire men for lesser transgressions. I’m done with ESPN. Try just reporting sports. Sports are made to not be political.

Reply
HL Sat

ESPN:
Fire Ms. Hill. Those types of comments are inappropriate and unbecoming of an ESPN host. You will lose my business due to tolerance of such comments from your personnel. No, I’m not a white supremacist. I’m not even white. I’m Hispanic. Nevertheless, those types of statements from Ms. Hill are inappropriate.

Reply
Howard D. Richardson

Dear Ms. Hill,
I don’t know who did your assessment of Pres. Donald Trump’s chadacter, politics, disposition, and beliefs but you should ask for your money back. Before you call someone a “white supremicist”, or a “racist”, either or both of which can be very damning if unfounded, which your accusation of our president clearly are, you have an obligation to have solid evidence, not hearsay, to support your argument.
I can’t tell you how to live your iife, but at the very least, you owe the leader of the free world an apology.
You are clearly a very intelligent person, so let’s see if you’re big enough to say, I was wrong, Mr. President, and I hope you will forgive me for making this unfounded accusation about you.
Don Richardson

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shawn marcon

Don, there is plenty of evidence. Please read real news. Please also consider thinking critically. For instance, you can ask yourself why the White House doesn’t deny that Trump is a white supremacist. Instead they just call for the reporter to be fired. Get it? Because they don’t want to deny that Trump is a white supremacist. Because he is one and they want us to think he is one. Get it?

Reply
Christian David, Scot

Dear Christian in USA ,
Yoga may be a trap ,
May be it is coy from Bible Genesis 24:63
Issac went to the field to meditate,,
But carefully check if there in yoga class you are uttering any gods names , David says,, I will not utter those names in my lips,,
So may be yoga might anger our God,,
Jesus went early in the morning to pray,,
You can also do like that,, carefully avoid yoga,,
God bless you my dear Christians ,,

Reply
Richard Lassig

I suppose they really should fire her. Since the networks are always doing the pc thing, let her go. It’s the right thing to do.

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Madonna Davis

It is always interesting to me that extremely successful individuals in any field take on an attitude of being victimized by reason of race, or gender. Perhaps being part of the forest makes one insensitive to the other individual trees, and perhaps they are just brain washed like so many in our public school system this day and age; but the facts themselves should make it perfectly clear that they as individuals have made it–why complain? Because it is the popular thing to do and for some reason they feel they are betraying (who knows whom or what) if they do not fall into lock step and do so. So sad.

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Johnny R

ESPN and CNN are the Democratic liberals bitch! We will no longer watch ESPN or CNN. Hell it is getting easier to ignore theses fools, If I am in a place of business and ESPN or CNN are on TV, I ask for them to turn it off or change the channel to something else. NO more ESPN, CNN, NFL! They are all part of ANTIFA and the BLM movements! Destroying America! All of them are so very far left they are not part of the average Americans thinking. America bans CNN, ESPN, NFL, Colin Kaepernick, George Clooney, Barbara Streisand to name a few from our families entertainment.

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Robert F Camacho, CPA

I used to love Ms. Hill. She was funny and poignant (about Sports). I don’t watch Bigots and Racists, so I can never watch her again.

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Anonymous

She needs to be an independent thinker…Not what the press keeps pushing..Is she a black supremist. ESPN is going south with all their political reteriick. Many people have bailed on the sports giant and canceled their subscriptions. In addition I own Disney stock and you can see why it has proformerd poorly.
The public sees between the lines with the press pushing a negative agenda.

Reply
Bob

Hill and Smith make it so easy to switch to another channel after PTI in search of real sport reporter instead of political commentators.

Reply
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