Tuesday, part of a long interview between journalist Gayle King and Lisa Leslie, star of the WNBA, North American women's basketball league, was broadcast on the CBS Twitter account. The excerpt, devoted to the rape accusation which had targeted Kobe Bryant in 2003, was controversial and a wave of insults and threats was uttered against the African-American journalist, in particular from fans of the basketball player, tragically died in late January. The most aggressive reaction came from rapper Snoop Dogg: "What's in it for you, why are you attacking us, your people?" Respect the family and stop before we pick you up, "he said on 50 Cent's Twitter account, another rapper.
CBS News President Susan Zirinsky denounced all of these reactions on Sunday in a statement: "We believe the threats against her or any journalist doing her job are reprehensible." Several personalities have also defended Gayle King on social media, including Susan Rice, the former national security adviser to President Barack Obama: “It's pitiful. Snoop, you're the one stopping. You take it out on Gayle King, you take it out on an army. You're going to lose and it won't be pretty to see, ”wrote the former diplomat.
This is despicable. Gayle King is one of the most principled, fair and tough journalists alive. Snoop, back the **** off. You come for @GayleKing, you come against an army. You will lose, and it won't be pretty. https://t.co/nUxcYCLS62- Susan Rice (@AmbassadorRice) February 8, 2020
Snoop Dogg returned to his remarks this weekend, stressing that he was "non-violent" and did not want "any harm" to the journalist, even if he considered that she had "gone too far". Gayle King also expressed himself and reproached the chain for having unwittingly broadcast an extract "completely out of context" from his long interview: "If like you I had only seen this little extract from the interview, I would be as upset as you. I am mortified, I am embarrassed, and I am angry. My chain put me in an impossible position. ”
The CBS reporter is not the first to cause controversy for raising the rape charge against former Lakers player Kobe Bryant. A few hours after the death of the basketball player, a reporter for the Washington Post , who had retweeted an article retracing the case, had been briefly laid off.
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