Laura Ingraham isn’t backing down from her embarrassing remarks about LeBron James and Kevin Durant.
The FOX News anchor made national headlines Thursday by saying James and Durant should “shut up and dribble” rather than sharing their opinions about United Sates President Donald Trump. Ingraham, who makes $15 million per year reading a teleprompter, also said kids shouldn’t seek political advice from millionaire basketball players.
James made the comments during a video piece produced by Uninterrupted, the athletes’ media platform the Cleveland Cavaliers star owns. And in light of Ingraham’s comments, which caused quite a stir in the sports world, this photo emerged from Uninterrupted’s Los Angeles office:
James replied to the tweet by referencing Ingraham’s “shut up and dribble” remark.
Ingraham then reentered the fray by inviting James on the FOX News set, which obviously is a bastion of fair-and-balanced conversation.
Wait, what happened to wanting James to “shut up and dribble?” Asking him to come on your show doesn’t really sound like the most effective way to silence a voice you believe has no right to be heard.
Although, we suppose James could just walk on the set, keep his mouth shit and dribble for a few minutes.
Hours before dishing out her invitation, Ingraham addressed the backlash on-air, claiming she wasn’t playing the race card in criticizing James.
OK, so, were Ingraham’s comments racist? Well, that’s for you to judge.
The fact of the matter is James and Durants’ comments about Trump are, of course, open for debate. What’s not debatable, however, is that all U.S. citizens have the right to voice their opinions — because America.
Ingraham issued a statement via FOX News defending her remarks.
“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,” Ingraham said in the statement. “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.”