ESPN, part of the Walt Disney Company, was faced with the thorny issue of entertainer Hank Williams Jr., who performs the theme song for Monday Night Football, with making a comparison of President Obama to Hitler. ESPN pulled Hank from tonight’s show. The LA Times has details here.
From the story: “In an interview on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends,” Williams compared the summer golf summit between Obama and House Speaker John Boehner as “one of the biggest political mistakes ever,” according to reports. “That turned a lot of people off.”
“It would be like Hitler playing golf with [Israeli leader] Benjamin Netanyahu,” Williams said. “In the shape this country’s in?”
Asked to explain his analogy, Williams said Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are “the enemy,” adding for some reason that they were “The Three Stooges.”
In a statement, ESPN executives said: “While Hank Williams Jr. is not an ESPN employee, we recognize he is closely linked to our company through the opening of ‘Monday Night Football.’ We are extremely disappointed with his comments, and as a result have decided to pull the open from tonight’s telecast.” (last night’s game- editor’s note)
Now the story isn’t clear that Williams’ opening has been pulled for good. I have to wonder if the ADL will get involved. But imagine that, a public figure makes an inappropriate reference to someone — in this case the President of the United States — and that’s an actual penalty attached to it likely in the form of a royalty check.
ESPN ought to cut a new opening with a new act and Hank Williams Jr. can open concerts for Ted Nugent.