ESPN Suspends Keith Olbermann For Mocking Penn State's Cancer Charity Fundraiser

Christine Rousselle
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Posted: Feb 24, 2015 2:45 PM
ESPN Suspends Keith Olbermann For Mocking Penn State's Cancer Charity Fundraiser

Source: Facebook-Jessica Mitchell

Noted jerk Keith Olbermann was let go from MSNBC in 2011, bounced around unsuccessfully at a few different networks, and eventually wound up on ESPN2, where he now hosts the show "Olbermann." Yesterday, Olbermann returned to his gadfly ways, when he replied to a tweet about Penn State's $13-million dollar fundraiser for pediatric cancer and called it "pitiful," and then proceeded to mock the university and its students.

ESPN released a statement apologizing for his behavior and suspended Olbermann for the rest of the week as a result of his tweets.

We are aware of the exchange Keith Olbermann had on Twitter last night regarding Penn State. It was completely inappropriate and does not reflect the views of ESPN. We have discussed it with Keith, who recognizes he was wrong. ESPN and Keith have agreed that he will not host his show for the remainder of this week and will return on Monday. The annual tradition of THON and the efforts of the students of Penn State to fight pediatric cancer should be applauded.

Each year, Penn State University students organize THON, a 46-hour no-sleeping no-sitting dance marathon to raise funds for the Four Diamonds Fund, a charity that assists children who are fighting cancer. This year, THON raised over 13 million dollars for the fund, and has raised well over 100 million dollars since its inception in 1977. It is the largest student-organized charity in the world. Regardless of your university affiliation, thoughts about the disgusting and terrible acts committed by a former football coach, or anything else relating to college sports, raising thirteen million dollars should be praised, not disparaged.

While Olbermann claims that he was merely calling the students, alumni, and fans of Penn State "pitiful" rather than the THON event, it's still a ridiculous reaction to a completely apolitical and innocuous event. The actions of the football program (by people who are either dead or incarcerated) should not define the perception of the entire university. Furthermore, it's absurd to politicize an event that has benefited thousands of lives.

To Olbermann's defense, he apparently has realized that his rhetoric was just a tad out of line. But seriously bro...take several chill pills.