Doug Gottlieb: “I don’t think anyone doesn’t understand [why Jon Gruden resigned] but it’s like…where does it end? What he wrote was repugnant and it sounded like the cliché high school football guy from the ’90s, dropping the ‘F-word’ for gay men, and using all sorts of language that isn’t appropriate in today’s culture... They are private emails, they q43 private thoughts, and you do wonder if the NFL forced this to happen because, of other things, he went after the commissioner. When does it end? Where do we draw the line? That’s the question and it’s a legitimate question… With this, we’re going to go back and find things historically that people have written, things that people have said, things that are repugnant – but where does it end??... If we can’t employ Jon Gruden as coach of one of the most historically significant teams because of those emails, where do we draw the line? I’d like to point out he’s employed Carl Nassib who’s the only openly gay player in the National Football League, which goes to the real point of it which is like – it’s one thing to say something in an email and it’s another thing to actually discriminate against a Black executive or a gay man. Those things are obviously immediately fireable offenses, now we get into language and things people say in private, what’s a joke and what’s not, and how do we view private conversations. All this is a reasonable conversation to have. The halftime show doesn’t necessarily represent the league, they don’t work for an individual team or get hired or fired, but it is the signature event of the Super Bowl. I love Snoop Dogg. The first time I ever heard Snoop Dogg it was on the ‘Deep Cover’ soundtrack. It’s a song about murdering cops. Go back to ‘The Chronic’ which is one of the greatest hip hop albums of my lifetime. There’s plenty of songs that in the title alone have incredibly offensive lyrics. Eminem is going to be in there, like c’mon, what are we doing? Where does it end? Are we just okay with Jon Gruden taking the fall for everything else and then we move on? There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong, I just like congruent arguments, and it feels like we make different arguments for different people… Do you think it’s hypocritical to have the halftime show as we have it?... They’re representing the league in the league’s biggest event. I’m not bothered by it, but it is very far afield from what they’ve usually done with the halftime show, and the lyrics of very many of the songs, and not the songs they’re going to show us, fly directly in the face of how we’re trying to evolve as people… There is a conversation to be had about language that you have used in the past and how you have learned from it. It doesn’t make it okay, but you should be allowed time to evolve.” (Full Take Above)
Listen to Doug Gottlieb discuss the fallout of the Jon Gruden emails that have taken the league by storm, as Gottlieb presents his theory on why the NFL could potentially be acting hypocritically by putting on a Super Bowl halftime show featuring musical artists who have written and performed songs with extremely offensive lyrics in the past that used some of the same language that got Gruden fired.
In the span of less than a week, Gruden went from arguably the most charismatic and beloved head coach of the era, to one of the most infamous NFL figures in recent history, as a series of leaked emails Gruden sent containing unforgivable language was unearthed pertaining to a completely different investigation into the Washington Redskins.
Gruden resigned in disgrace on Monday night and will potentially never work in the NFL ever again, given the toxic response his emails elicited from players and fans around the league.
Check out the video above as Gottlieb wonders where you draw the line in policing what people have said in the distant past, and how it's perceived in a much more evolved and socially refined atmosphere today.