Update: FOX News and Laura Ingraham have since released this statement:
“In 2003, I wrote a New York Times bestseller called ‘Shut Up & Sing,’ in which I criticized celebrities like the Dixie Chicks & Barbra Streisand who were trashing then-President George W. Bush. I have used a variation of that title for more than 15 years to respond to performers who sound off on politics. I’ve told Robert DeNiro to ‘Shut Up & Act,’ Jimmy Kimmel to ‘Shut Up & Make Us Laugh,’ and just this week told the San Antonio Spurs’ Gregg Popovich to ‘Shut up & Coach.’ If pro athletes and entertainers want to freelance as political pundits, then they should not be surprised when they’re called out for insulting politicians. There was no racial intent in my remarks – false, defamatory charges of racism are a transparent attempt to immunize entertainment and sports elites from scrutiny and criticism. Additionally, we stated on my show that these comments came from an ESPN podcast, which was not the case – the content was unaffiliated with ESPN.”
Original story below:
FOX News host Laura Ingraham blasted former NBA MVPs LeBron James and Kevin Durant for their political comments made in a recent interview with ESPN’s Cari Champion for Uninterrupted.com.
In the video, the NBA stars discuss the current political climate, which includes James accusing President Donald Trump of being “someone who doesn’t understand the people, and really don’t give a f— about the people.”
Ingraham apparently took offense and responded by chastising the multi-time NBA champion, calling his comments “ignorant” and falsely accusing him of “leaving high school early to join the NBA.”
“Must they run their mouths like that,” Ingraham said. “Unfortunately, a lot of kids, some adults, take these ignorant comments seriously. Look, there might be a cautionary lesson in LeBron for kids. This is what happens when you attempt to leave high school a year early to join the NBA. And it’s always unwise to seek political advice from someone who gets paid $100 million a year to bounce a ball. Oh and, LeBron and Kevin, you’re great players but no one voted for you. Millions elected Trump to be their coach. So keep the commentary to yourself or as someone once said, ‘shut up and dribble.'”
Of course, James didn’t “leave high school a year early,” rather excelled enough as a prospect for the Cleveland Cavaliers to rightfully invest a No. 1 overall draft pick on him and make him a franchise player.
Also, as far as voting goes, perhaps Ms. Ingram missed the fact that the forward led all NBA players in All-Star voting for the fifth time in the last 12 years and has been voted to play in the game 14 times during his 15-year career, as well as having been elected league MVP by NBA writers four times during his career.
But the tone of “they” and “shut up and dribble” speaks volumes of ignorance that don’t need any justifying.
James and Durant have just as much of a right to speak their political views as Ingraham does. Just because they “get paid $100 million to bounce a ball” as opposed to being overpaid to do a morning bias news show, doesn’t make them any less qualified to speak under the First Amendment.