I have never called for Skip Bayless to be fired.
The reason is even though he says a lot of silly things the intent behind words is rarely malicious. I don’t like the name calling like “Bosh Spice” and “Prince James”, but it isn’t something that isn’t heard all the time. Saying Lebron isn’t clutch is different than saying Lebron isn’t black enough because of who he dates or his hairstyle.
Rob Parker is a different story, he has a history of these type of malicious comments and it was the reason he was forced to resign from The Detroit News.
He displays an unprofessional attitude on and off the set which we documented here.
Frankly he shouldn’t get the benefit of the doubt like Stephen A. Smith or Skip Bayless. The appropriate action should be he is no longer with the company.
If ESPN and specifically 1st Take are going to continually speak about race, they need to have people on the panel who are able to handle the discussion in an intelligent manner.
I am not blind to what Parker was trying to say, but his inability to say it like a professional journalist is the reason he should no longer be employed at the company. He is a clown act, who should apologize not just to RG3 and his fiancee, but also the viewers. He is in this position to give his opinion, but with that power comes a responsibility to not say ignorant, prejudice and racist things.
I was offended not just as an African-American, but as a journalist and a man by his comments. For a very long time all African-Americans wanted was a fair shake and to be judged on our character and quality of work. To even suggest Robert Griffin III was less of a black man for also wanting that is a fireable offense.
We will see if ESPN does the right thing. If embracing the debate means perpetuating stereotypes African-Americans have tried for years to overcome, then I will pass on that.
Have been asked for comment on Rob Parker comments: The comments were inappropriate and we are evaluating our next steps.
— Mike Soltys (@espnmikes) December 14, 2012