Yesterday (Feb.6), Gayle King was the topic of intense discussion on social media. She caught the ire of many after a clip from an interview with Lisa Leslie hit the web. King, who is well-known for her incredible interview skills, came under fire for asking the WNBA legend, Lisa Leslie, who was good friends with Kobe Bryant about his sexual assault case that was settled back in 2005.
The CBS This Morning host broke her silence this morning via her Instagram account, saying she understands the anger and expressing she is “furious” with CBS for sharing the viral moment from what she described as “wide-ranging interview.” King also states that the clip was taken totally out of context.
“I’ve been up reading the comments about the interview I did with Lisa Leslie about Kobe Bryant, and I know that if I had only seen the clip that you saw, I’d be extremely angry with me too, I am mortified. I am embarrassed and I am very angry. Unbeknownst to me, my network put up a clip from a very wide-ranging interview — totally taken out of context — and when you see it that way, it’s very jarring. It’s jarring to me. I didn’t even know anything about it.”
In the clip that put Gayle on social media’s “canceling block,” she asked Leslie:
“It’s been said that his legacy is complicated, because of a sexual assault charge that was dismissed in 2003, 2004. Is it complicated for you, as a woman, as a WNBA player?”
Leslie then replied:
“It’s not complicated for me at all… I just never see — have ever seen him being the kind of person that would be — do something to violate a woman or be aggressive in that way. That’s just not the person that I know.”
King then followed-up, “But Lisa, you wouldn’t see it though. As his friend, you wouldn’t see it.”
Whether people accept Gayle’s explanation is one thing, but it’s clear they were not here for her at all. Celebrities like Ari Lennox, 50 Cent, and Snoop Dogg calling her and Oprah out for “singling out Black men” and not going after white men like Harvey Weinstein, who were accused of sexual assault.
Keep in mind Weinstein is currently on trial for his predatory behavior, and numerous documentaries detailing the Hollywood moguls behavior are out. Hence, the “whataboutism” when it comes to talking about sexual assault is weird. We shall see how long the outrage towards King lasts. She definitely won’t be the last person to bring up Kobe’s rape case cause while his life is full of amazing moments, it’s still complicated.
So that poses the question If where are going to talk about a polarizing person such as Kobe Bryant isn’t only fair, you talk about his life as a whole?
You can listen to Gayle speak about the clip in her own words below.
Photo: John Lamparski / Getty