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Sarah Huckabee Sanders Wants Jemele Hill Fired Because She Told the Truth About Trump and White Supremacy

In a disturbingly authoritarian move, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called for ESPN’s 6pm SportsCenter co-host Jemele Hill to be fired for her tweets about Donald Trump and white supremacy. “I think that is one of the more outrageous comments that anyone could make,” Huckabee Sanders said. “It is certainly something that I think would be a fireable offense by ESPN.”

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ESPN had already issued a statement about Hill’s tweets, saying, “The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the President do not represent the position of ESPN. We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognizes her actions were inappropriate.”

So what exactly did Hill say? It started when she responded to a news story about how Kid Rock “loves black people.” She sarcastically responded, “He loves black people so much that he pandered to racists by using a flag that unquestionably stands for dehumanizing black people.”

From there, the Twitter conversation quickly spiraled, and talk soon turned to Donald Trump. Hill tweeted some statements about him, and…a lot of them just look like facts to me.

“Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.”

“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?”

“How is it a “false narrative?” Did he hire and court white supremacists? Answer: YES”

Admittedly, some of Hill’s comments were more inflammatory, even if they’re nothing I’d personally argue with. I can at least understand why ESPN felt the need to respond.

“Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy. Period.”

“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”

However, the irony is obviously lost on Huckabee Sanders that, as she declares how “outrageous” any suggestions of white supremacy are, she comes after a black woman’s job with far more vigor than she ever has, say, any of the scores of white men who criticized Trump’s Charlottesville response.

Now, ESPN is legally entitled to fire any of its employees for conduct which it finds to be damaging or inappropriate (should their contract allow). The First Amendment doesn’t always protect you from that consequence. But it does explicitly protect you from the government’s suppression of and attacks on your speech, which is what makes Huckabee Sanders’ comment so frightening. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that her response was full-on authoritarianism, but – as with so many things in the Trump administration – it’s skirting dangerously close.

(Via Sports Illustrated and Variety; image via screengrab of the press briefing)

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