Rob Parker's suspension for asking if Robert Griffin III was a "brother or a cornball brother" ends in a week or so and 1.) he really doesn't seem that sorry about what happened and 2.) he says First Take producers knew what he had to say.
Parker appeared on a Detroit community affairs show, Flashpoint, and had plenty to say.
I mean looking back on some of the comments I can see where people can take it out of context and run with it. But the response and what happened over the past 30 days with everything was just shocking.
Hmmm. The show's host, Devin Scillian, was like: Wait, obviously you apologized and you're not defending your comments, right? You regret them, don't you?
As you look back now, if I could have stopped all of this—it was never meant to condemn the young man. RG III is a great young man with a bright future. It was more about concerns, not condemning him.
In other words, Parker is in exactly the same unapologetic place he was a few weeks ago: I was just raising the issue of whether he was a cornball brother, not claiming that as my own! To wit:
It was just a conversation that's had in the black community when athletes or famous entertainers or whatever push away from their people. And that's really what it was about. We saw with OJ Simpson and some other people where they say, 'I'm not black, I'm OJ.' So it's more about that, not about RG III and what's going on. It's more about this thing we've battled for years about why people have pushed away from their people.
And then Rob Parker sort of throws his First Take colleagues under the bus. He said they knew what he was going to say; it's not like it was off the cuff!
I mean, we had a discussion inside a pre-production meeting. And not every single word but they knew which way we were going. I think, it's not just off the cuff, obviously.
If by this point we now know that Parker isn't feeling that regretful about the incident, he says First Take producers shouldn't either. The cornball comment is what the whole show is about:
I think [ESPN was] really hurt by it, you know what I mean? The backlash that came from it. It wasn't meant in that vein at all. I think the people and the producers and everyone on that show—we just didn't think of it that way. We weren't trying to slam the kid, we were trying to be able to tackle these issues. The one thing I'm proud about being on that show, First Take, for the last six years is that we are willing to tackle a lot of stuff that most shows won't even touch or even discuss. I think it's important, I think we've done it in really good way. This is the first time really we've been in hot water dealing with such an issue.