This has got to be the final straw, right? Curt Schilling, ESPN’s baseball analyst who has been in trouble multiple times for his social media posts and comments, has once again stepped in it. Indeed, this may be his worst one yet.
It was a meme he shared on Facebook and under which he commented dealing with the issue of access to public facilities for transgender people and it contains a disgusting caricature of what, apparently, Schilling believes to be a transgender person. I won’t reproduce the meme he shared here, but you can see it if you’d like at OutSports, which brought this to the public’s attention. They also pass along his comments, which I presume he’ll soon delete. Schilling:
“A man is a man no matter what they call themselves. I don’t care what they are, who they sleep with, men’s room was designed for the penis , women’s not so much. Now you need laws telling us differently? Pathetic”
While many may feel that way, such sentiments are wholly ignorant of transgender people and their nature (note: they are people who just have to go to the bathroom sometimes like everyone else) and perpetuates stereotypes of a much-maligned class of people. There is an entire b.s. perpetuation machine backing these sorts of sentiments, by the way, smearing transgender people as deviants or threats when, in fact, there are no documented cases of people exploiting transgender non-discrimination laws to commit crimes. Of course, given Schilling’s track record, it is not necessarily surprising that he’s willing to buy into false claims and hyperbole which support his general disposition.
But even if you step away from the substance, it’s undeniable that public access for transgender people is a highly controversial issue at the moment, with North Carolina passing a restrictive law in this regard which has led to boycotts of the state by performing artists and travel restrictions for public officials who would visit North Carolina in their official capacity. Likewise, the NBA is currently considering taking next year’s All-Star Game out of Charlotte. No matter which side of this matter a person may fall, it’s highly doubtful that ESPN wants one of its top commenters wading into it at the moment, at least in as crass a manner as Schilling did.
Of course, Schilling has skated in the past and still makes seven figures talking about baseball for ESPN. One wonders if this will finally cause them to fire him or if he’ll continue to be teflon.