Gayle King has become the topic of the week after her controversial interview with Lisa Leslieabout the life and death of Kobe Bryant. It was so intense that it sparked a chain of events that included threats from Snoop Dogg, demands for her to be canceled, and a statement from Bill Cosby, who’s currently serving prison time for a sexual assault conviction. Considering the intense backlash towards King, it seems like a great moment to revisit her past interviews, some of which received universal praise and some, as we know now, will probably elicit criticism.
With King’s recent interview with Leslie, many believed it was inappropriate for King to bring up the 2003 rape allegations against Kobe, which were eventually dropped from criminal court and settled in civil court. However, with more context to the full interview, King discussed various things with Leslie, including Kobe’s mentorship to women athletes, his work ethic and his aspirations to be like another great basketball player, Michael Jordan. When the big rape allegations question came up King framed it in a way that the media was framing it — because the media was talking about it before Gayle’s interview. Everyone from Slate to Time magazine published articles discussing how people might be processing the rape allegations in Kobe’s death and how the media has been covering it.
King brought this up in a preface to her question. “It’s been said that his legacy is complicated because of a sexual assault charge which was dismissed in 2003, 2004. Is it complicated for you as a women as a WNBA player?” This is when Leslie responded, “It’s not complicated for me at all.” She continued, “I just have never seen him being the kind of person that would do something to violate a woman or be aggressive in that way. That’s just not the person that I know.”
King then pushed, “But Lisa you wouldn’t see it though. As his friend you wouldn’t see it” to which Leslie replied “And that’s possible. I just don’t believe that. And I’m not saying things didn’t happen. I just don’t believe that things didn’t happen with force.”
Then, Gayle asked a question that could’ve possibly cleared things up with all media outlets covering the allegations, “Is it even a fair question to talk about it, considering he’s no longer with us and that it was resolved or is it really part of his history?”
Leslie responded, “I think that the media should be more respectful at this time. If you had questions about it, you had many years to ask him that. I don’t think it’s something that we should keep hanging over his legacy.”
Full Story/ Source: NewsOne.com