ESPN announced several days ago it was firing an additional 150 employees, a round of terminations that follows the bloodbath in April when leadership fired 100 employees, mostly on-air talent.
This time, the employees are mostly production staff, as executives claim they are redirecting resources. In reality, the excessive terminations for what used to be the leader in sports news are an example of ESPN’s radical political shift.
The ratings for ESPN have continued to drop precipitously, in part because of people dropping cable in favor of streaming platforms. But the larger reason is the result of a continued commitment by the network to being “MSESPN,” for which it mixes left-wing political commentary with sports analysis. Because these are sports analysts who don’t have an extensive background in politics, it means their political commentary is rather superficial and becomes just a distraction to their insipid sports commentary.
This — combined with the never-ending cheerleading for those who kneel for the flag; radical left-wing commenters like Jemel Hill being promoted; coaches sounding off on public policy, players refusing to visit the White House, and never-ending repetition and analysis — has caused viewers to literally turn off.
The national anthem is a civic ceremony that should be inclusive. Native Americans and Tuskegee airmen served faithfully and honored the flag during World War II despite facing far more racism and segregation than minorities face today. Yet pampered millionaires and their characterless enablers on ESPN continue to force their political activism on viewers.
Sports and the civic ceremonies before them are a chance for people to escape politics, class, and social divisions by respectively cheering and booing for their favorite teams. Most importantly, it’s a chance for conservatives to escape the constant lecturing and moral preening from liberals.
Until ESPN figures that out, it will continue to fade into irrelevancy.
But I suppose it can always take a knee for its fired comrades.
Morgan Deane, an OpsLens contributor, is a former U.S. Marine Corps infantry rifleman who also served in the National Guard as an intelligence analyst. He is the author of the book “Decisive Battles in Chinese History,” as well as “Bleached Bones and Wicked Serpents: Ancient Warfare in the Book of Mormon.” This OpsLens article is used by permission.