ESPN president John Skipper weighs in on the Robert Lee, Charlottesville controversy
On Tuesday, news broke that ESPN broadcaster Robert Lee had been taken off an assignment calling a Virginia football game in Charlottesville because he shares a name with confederate general Robert E. Lee.
That sparked quite the controversy on social media and, really, everywhere else, as many questioned why his name mattered so much.
On Wednesday, ESPN president John Skipper weighed in on the matter, releasing an internal statement to employees about why the decision was made to switch Lee’s assignment:
ESPN's John Skipper weighs in pic.twitter.com/j7P9McZ7KE
— Teddy Greenstein (@TeddyGreenstein) August 24, 2017
As you can see in Skipper’s memo, the possibility of Lee facing “social hectoring and trolling” was a big part of the decision to move him, as was Lee’s own personal preference.
Virginia will open the season on Saturday, Sept. 2, with a home game against William and Mary, but Lee won’t be at that game.
Instead, he’ll be in Pittsburgh, calling the Pitt-Youngstown State season opener.