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ESPN pulled an announcer named Robert Lee from a University of Virginia game because of his name

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ESPN was so worried about offending people that it offended people.
We are now at the phase where the debate over Confederate statues has reached sports — but this time, it’s in a pretty dumb way.
In the newest controversy, ESPN is under fire for pulling an Asian-American announcer from a September 2 University of Virginia football game because his name is Robert Lee — which is similar to the name of the Civil War general who fought to dismantle the United States and maintain slavery. ESPN said it pulled Lee “simply because of the coincidence of his name.”
A couple weeks ago, a group of neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klan members, and other white supremacists marched onto the University of Virginia campus in Charlottesville — to, purportedly, protest the removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee, the general, from a local park. The protests, along with President Donald Trump’s remarks drawing a false equivalency between the white supremacist protesters and counterprotesters, have once again put the spotlight on the battle over whether Confederate symbols should remain up in public spaces.
While all this was happening, ESPN said it brought the idea to Lee, the announcer, of switching games. He agreed, apparently to “avoid the potential zoo” that could come out of the game (which won’ t be televised, but it will be streamed) .
Conservative media in particular did not approve of the move. As Brian Stelter reported at CNN, “Two of the primetime shows on Fox News mocked ESPN for the decision. A banner on screen called it ‘pathetic.’ ”
Barry Petchesky at Deadspin, a left-leaning sports blog, also criticized the move in a post titled “Welp, ESPN Shot Itself In The Dick”:
So far, though, ESPN has stuck to its decision.
For more on the battle over Confederate statues, read Vox’s explainer .

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