Sports reporter Britt McHenry was in the headlines last week after a video surfaced of her making harsh, verbally abusive comments to a tow truck company employee after her car had been towed away.
This week’s “Crisis of the Week” column in the Wall Street Journal sums up the incident well:
A video of the incident shows Ms. McHenry lashing into the employee, making fun of her appearance and education, and questioning her choice of employers. Ms. McHenry later apologized on Twitter, and ESPN responded by suspending Ms. McHenry for a week. Her comments to the tow-truck employee came days after she put a post on Facebook asking her followers to “take the high road and be nice to people.”
Discussion online and off continues about whether ESPN should have allowed her to return, and whether her apology was sufficient. Our take? Everyone makes mistakes. The best-intentioned of us have bad days (and even very bad days). Living with pressure is part of being in the public eye. Most public figures can recover from an incident such as this, but time—and Ms. McHenry’s thousands of fans—will decide how this rude tirade will impact her public image. That includes whether they want to continue watching her on ESPN.