Sage Steele claims Black colleagues excluded her from ESPN special, Internet says she's 'being trash again'
SportsCenter anchor Sage Steele has complained about ESPN not including her in one of its race-special programs that aired on June 24. Steele has claimed that her Black colleagues kept her from participating in ‘Time for Change: We Won’t Be Defeated’, according to The Wallstreet Journal reports.
‘Time for Change: We Won’t Be Defeated’ is an initiative by ESPN that explores the intersection of sports, race and culture. The one-hour special analyzes Black athletes' experience with racial injustice and explores the role sport plays in bridging the gap between people of color in America and law enforcement. SportsCenter anchors Elle Duncan, Michael Eaves and Jay Harris along with NBA studio host Maria Taylor are currently serving as the hosts.
While Steele has called out ESPN for excluding her from the program, owing to the opinion of “certain Black colleagues”, the network has denied the accusations. On July 21, Joe Flint of The Wall Street Journal reported, "An ESPN spokesman denied that Ms Steele wasn’t invited to participate in the special because of a campaign by colleagues to undermine her or that her views played any role in Mr Fountain’s decisions."
While ESPN and Steele continue to continue to dispute, Internet users are widely discussing the issue on Twitter with many questioning her about her "sudden" interest in a race-special program, while dragging her for her opinion about the same from earlier. One Twitter user wrote, "Um...didn't Sage Steele exclude herself from race roundtable? I mean, she did say ESPN shouldn't be involved in racial discussions, didn't she? So why would she want to be included in one."
"So what’s 'bizarre' is complaining that you aren’t considered an authentic voice for the 'community' when the only thing Sage Steele has ever represented as it pertains to black people, is her very narrow view on what the Black (her) experience is. She’s shown 0 desire to expand," wrote another. Adding to the previous tweets, another user wrote, "So I didn't see the 'Time for Change' special last month. I just read the synopsis of what it covered. IMO NOTHING I read would Sage Steele have WANTED to (nor could she) add any context to. And since she never seemed to want to before... Why is she pretending to want to now?”
Meanwhile, a few have resorted to mocking her for her recent claims saying, "The fact that Sage Steele made a statement about being left off of a project because she wasn't seen as Black enough by her Black colleagues and the whole world agreeing is hilarious to me." While another agitated Internet user added, “Oh look Sage Steele being trash again. Been a while for her I guess," referring to the precious controversies Steele has been entangled in.