Will sportscasters never learn? When you get paid for what you say you ought to be mindful of what you say and stay on topic. Dana Jacobson, sportscaster for ESPN, is the latest to run afoul of one of the first rules of sportscasting. In a tirade of profanity, she used the “f” word to describe what she felt should happen to Jesus, according to a story published on the website of WND. The story claims Dana’s comments were made at a celebrity roast in Atlantic City where she said, “f___ Notre Dame, f___ Touchdown Jesus, f___ Jesus.”
Her comments have raised the ire of the Catholic League which has launched a campaign to force ESPN to apologize and take corrective, if not punitive, actions. Thus far, ESPN’s only response has been silence.
Meanwhile, Dana has issued what Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, has called an “unsatisfactory statement” in which Dana attempted to apologize for slandering a Notre Dame mural but not Jesus. Dana has also taken refuge behind the defense of intoxication.
It is hard to imagine any rational mind finding humor in Dana’s comments. Nor can it be envisioned how any rational thinking person could justify the comments on reasonable critique grounds. The comments are offensive even to one who is not religious. They attack a religious personality (God?) in a way that practitioners of that religion would find offensive and blasphemous.
Both Dana and ESPN ought to issue a public apology and take appropriate corrective measures. And in the future, Dana ought to confine her comments to sports and remember that freedom of speech carries with it the responsibility to think before one speaks.