Former sportscaster sues Fox network for religious discrimination

Craig James, a longtime football analyst for several networks and a 2012 Senate candidate in Texas, is suing Fox Sports Southwest for firing him for his religious beliefs on homosexuality.

James's 2012 candidacy unraveled after he made several controversial statements about gays and gay marriage.

The Daily Signal:

Craig James, a former professional football player and respected sportscaster, is suing Fox Sports Southwest, alleging that the broadcast network fired him because of his religious beliefs on homosexuality and marriage.

After working at the network for only a few days—and hosting one broadcast—James was terminated by Fox Sports on Sep. 1, 2013.

A senior vice president at the network suggested that the decision was based on statements James made about homosexuality and same-sex marriage—expressed more than a year prior to being hired at Fox Sports while campaigning to run for Senate.

James ran for a U.S. Senate seat in 2012, eventually losing to Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

“We just asked ourselves how Craig’s statements would play in our human resources department,” Lou D’Ermilio, Fox Sports Southwest’s senior vice president of communications, told the Dallas Morning News in early September 2013. “He couldn’t say those things here.”

In a 2012 Republican debate, James said he thinks being gay is “a choice” and that society “should not give benefits to those civil unions.”

“The fact that a major corporation would reach back into my past and hold something against me because of an honest answer that the public deserved—from me as a candidate—and fire me, that’s troubling,” James told The Daily Signal in an exclusive interview.

Companies can typically terminate employees for a range of reasons, but under the Texas Commission of Human Rights Act, it is illegal to discriminate against employees because of religion (among other characteristics such as sex, age and race).

Texas does not have employment laws protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation, but James maintains he did not say “one thing” about his faith while working at Fox Sports.

According to his lawyer, James has never faced discrimination complaints based on sexual orientation, either.

James said the backlash he received after Fox Sports spoke out about his termination left him “unable” to get a job in the sports broadcasting agency.

The network, he said, “pigeonholed me into this anti-gay guy.”

“My agent immediately told me I was radioactive,” James said. “If someone stepped out and hired me right now, they would have to answer to a very vocal minority.”

The last seven years have seen the most precipitous decline in religious freedom in American history.  And gay controversies are only a part of the assault.  Contraception, abortion, sexual identity – Christians are being squeezed and forced into a corner where they are punished if they speak out regarding their cherished beliefs.  They are compelled to withdraw their children from a public education that belittles their creed and teaches that disagreeing with the dominant liberal culture is not just wrong, but evil.

That "vocal minority" are a lynch mob, constantly looking to throw a rope over a tree branch and string up anyone who disagrees with them.  And the irony of ironies – you are the one considered "intolerant" if you don't toe their ever narrowing ideological line.

Craig James, a longtime football analyst for several networks and a 2012 Senate candidate in Texas, is suing Fox Sports Southwest for firing him for his religious beliefs on homosexuality.

James's 2012 candidacy unraveled after he made several controversial statements about gays and gay marriage.

The Daily Signal:

Craig James, a former professional football player and respected sportscaster, is suing Fox Sports Southwest, alleging that the broadcast network fired him because of his religious beliefs on homosexuality and marriage.

After working at the network for only a few days—and hosting one broadcast—James was terminated by Fox Sports on Sep. 1, 2013.

A senior vice president at the network suggested that the decision was based on statements James made about homosexuality and same-sex marriage—expressed more than a year prior to being hired at Fox Sports while campaigning to run for Senate.

James ran for a U.S. Senate seat in 2012, eventually losing to Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

“We just asked ourselves how Craig’s statements would play in our human resources department,” Lou D’Ermilio, Fox Sports Southwest’s senior vice president of communications, told the Dallas Morning News in early September 2013. “He couldn’t say those things here.”

In a 2012 Republican debate, James said he thinks being gay is “a choice” and that society “should not give benefits to those civil unions.”

“The fact that a major corporation would reach back into my past and hold something against me because of an honest answer that the public deserved—from me as a candidate—and fire me, that’s troubling,” James told The Daily Signal in an exclusive interview.

Companies can typically terminate employees for a range of reasons, but under the Texas Commission of Human Rights Act, it is illegal to discriminate against employees because of religion (among other characteristics such as sex, age and race).

Texas does not have employment laws protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation, but James maintains he did not say “one thing” about his faith while working at Fox Sports.

According to his lawyer, James has never faced discrimination complaints based on sexual orientation, either.

James said the backlash he received after Fox Sports spoke out about his termination left him “unable” to get a job in the sports broadcasting agency.

The network, he said, “pigeonholed me into this anti-gay guy.”

“My agent immediately told me I was radioactive,” James said. “If someone stepped out and hired me right now, they would have to answer to a very vocal minority.”

The last seven years have seen the most precipitous decline in religious freedom in American history.  And gay controversies are only a part of the assault.  Contraception, abortion, sexual identity – Christians are being squeezed and forced into a corner where they are punished if they speak out regarding their cherished beliefs.  They are compelled to withdraw their children from a public education that belittles their creed and teaches that disagreeing with the dominant liberal culture is not just wrong, but evil.

That "vocal minority" are a lynch mob, constantly looking to throw a rope over a tree branch and string up anyone who disagrees with them.  And the irony of ironies – you are the one considered "intolerant" if you don't toe their ever narrowing ideological line.