The Press Box Perspective: Just Shut Up Schilling
By Dan Hiner
Well I didn’t think I’d say this again, but former pitcher and baseball analyst Curt Schilling put his foot in his mouth.
The former World Series champion has been fired from ESPN after he shared a post on Facebook with a overweight man in a blonde wig with a T-shirt that read, “LET HIM IN! to the restroom with your daughter or else you’re a narrow-minded, judgmental, unloving racist bigot who needs to die.”
As if that wasn’t bad enough, Schilling added, “A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don’t care what they are, who they sleep with. Men’s rooms were designed for the penis, women’s not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic.”
As you would expect, people were outraged at the blatant narrow-mindedness of the former MLB star, and then Schilling finally got what was coming to him.
“ESPN is an inclusive company,” ESPN said when they released a statement. “Curt Schilling has been advised that his conduct was unacceptable, and his employment with ESPN has been terminated.”
So in response to his firing, Schilling took to Twitter to fight for his right to free speech in a discussion with Los Angeles Dodgers’ pitcher Brandon McCarthy.
Even in a civilized discussion with another professional athlete, he still said transgender bathroom laws allowed transgender people to use the bathroom of their choice and said “perverts” and “scum” now have the opportunity to molest women and children.
McCarthy replied with “What is stopping any pervert from already going into a bathroom not designated for them and doing what they want? Nothing.”
Schilling responded with, “Oh sorry. Just assumed scum like that would take advantage of laws that gave them easier access to women and children.”
Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, but the big question is why the hell do people keep giving this man an opportunity to make a fool of himself?
Someone outside of ESPN had to say something to Schilling. This isn’t a new discussion. The LGBTQ community has been fighting for respect for years now.
The only reason Schilling had the opportunity to share this post was due to a North Carolina law that requires members of the public to use the bathrooms based on their biological gender.
This isn’t the first time Schilling himself laughed in the face of political correctness — if it was, this piece wouldn’t be published.
In August, Schilling tweeted a picture of Adolf Hitler with the text “It’s said only 5-10 percent of Muslims are extremists” and “In 1940, only 7 percent of Germans were Nazis. How’d that go?”
Well, how did THAT go Curt?
Again the public demanded ESPN reprimand Schilling, who was calling the Little League World Series at the time. He was later taken off his assignment for the social media debacle, and ESPN told Schilling to watch what he’s saying while employed with them.
Legally, it doesn’t matter what he says on social media or during postseason interviews, as long as his contract doesn’t say otherwise. But when your employer tells you to watch what you say, maybe you should listen.
This should serve as an example of how to voice your opinion. Some thoughts should be kept private, and if you want to discuss a sensitive topic, you should find a way to have an educated discussion.
Schilling, I hope you learned a valuable lesson from your firing. Despite the openness of today’s society in regards to social media, you should learn the importance of basic respect towards other people.
Granted, that should have been a lesson learned a long time ago. There’s a fine line between having an opinion that you are trying to voice, and coming off as an insufferable ass — especially if you are a public figure.
My advice to Schilling; delete your social media accounts and ride off into the sunset. The public will eventually forget everything you said, but trying to defend yourself is only making it worse.
It’s amazing that a man who spent his entire life learning how to throw a nine-inch baseball and take control of a baseball game still can’t find a way of controlling his mouth.