Maria Taylor Saga Is Emblematic of The Leftist Vision of America

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It’s hard to explain the Maria Taylor saga with a straight face, especially if you’re talking to people outside the media industry who probably don’t even know who she is. But if you can get them to listen long enough, you can expect their facial expressions to change once you get to the part where the easily replaceable studio host turned down her company’s offer of $5 million and then tried to paint the company as racist to extort even more money from them. If your audience still doesn’t quite get it, they’ll surely break after they hear Taylor then left the network she tried to burn down and went to a competitor.

At some point soon, Taylor’s former bosses at ESPN will sit back and wonder whether they are finally safe. Taylor is gone now. She can’t hurt them anymore, right? Unfortunately, that assumption would be incorrect. Taylor’s entire plan — which ended with her leaking the private conversation of a colleague whom she had already beaten out for a job — was not just a reflection of Taylor’s deviousness but of American culture, now controlled monolithically by the Left. There will be more Maria Taylors. And the next one may actually play their hand well.

An influential segment of the Left has successfully weaponized social media and the press to such an extent that corporate executives answer to them before the boards to which they report.

Maria Taylor’s entire plan is emblematic of the Left’s vision of America. In their minds, they can control white executives through their black employees using fear and manufactured guilt. Without knowing it, Taylor racialized a network more than she helped herself. Next, look for the Left to find another pawn at AT&T, Comcast, and Netflix.

Taylor’s mostly white bosses saw the writing on the wall following George Floyd’s death. They could no longer simply treat people of all colors equally. To stay in power, they had to prove they were not racist, which meant treating employees of certain racial groups better than others.

Despite ESPN’s long history of promoting and paying black personalities lucrative salaries, the network couldn’t effectively erase the narrative, promoted by users on social media and the New York Times, that it had let go of Jemele Hill, Cari Champion, and Josina Anderson because of their race and gender (you can read more about that here).

Taylor and ESPN needed each other. Taylor wanted ESPN’s money because she knew no other network would pay her half of what she demanded. ESPN wanted Taylor to erase an incorrect, but looming narrative about race relations inside the network. As a result, ESPN tried to overpay Taylor multiple times.

Last year, ESPN offered Taylor $5 million a year, a $4 million a year raise. Taylor, knowing she had the upper hand, turned that offer down. She wanted more, closer to $8 million per year. But then an unforeseen circumstance changed everything in their contract negotiations — COVID. ESPN then had to reduce its offer to Taylor down to $3 million, still a 200% increase at a time when the network had forced many other employees to take 30 to 60% pay cuts just to keep their jobs.

The truth is that Taylor had already won. Unfortunately, she just couldn’t see it.

Not only had they offered her 3x the money, but ESPN had also named Taylor the host of its most valued property, the NBA Finals on ABC. Taylor got the job over veteran NBA host Rachel Nichols, who had the assignment written in her contract. Taylor had a contract offer that trailed only Stephen A. Smith and Mike Greenberg, both of whom are nearly 20 years older than she is.

Despite all the headaches she gave them, ESPN was willing to make Taylor one of the faces of the network, with a plan to ultimately make her the face of ESPN one day. Taylor responded to all of this by leaking audio of Nichols to portray the employer that had built her up and given her roles she hadn’t earned as misogynistic and racist.

But here’s where the Leftist path that Taylor attempted to follow goes awry. There’s never an end. There is always another racist dragon to slay, another dissenting voice to silence. So they keep asking for more.

Taylor felt she had such a stranglehold on her relationship with ESPN that she exposed herself before she could declare victory. Her first mistake came too late.

Think about it. Cancel culture started as a push to bring awareness to individuals who were detrimental to a brand. Today, cancel culture is a self-serving movement that helps those who enforce it eliminate their more capable competition as well as ease the guilt of their own racist past.

Maria Taylor couldn’t just accept her victory. Instead, her demands and requests grew so unreasonable that her even guilty, petrified white bosses who were at her mercy had to say no.

In the end, Taylor didn’t win. ESPN offered her all she wanted and more. Taylor still left, likely for less money. Though she intended only to blow smoke, Taylor ended up burning down the entire bridge. She wore the sharp blade down to nothing.

Maria Taylor is an extension of the Left’s takeover of American culture. She also gives us a preview of its ending.

Big Tech began censoring accounts to remove conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones and Milo Yiannopoulos. In 2020, social media companies interfered in the presidential election by suppressing a factual report about Hunter Biden’s laptop. Is Big Tech the next group to get run over by the runaway train they set in motion? 

In any case, when you finally finish explaining to those lucky folks outside the media world who Maria Taylor is, they’ll probably conclude that she was ultimately just a pawn for the Left in this case. And they’d be right.

Follow Bobby Burack on Twitter.

Written by Bobby Burack

Bobby Burack is a writer for OutKick where he reports and analyzes the latest topics in media, culture, sports, and politics..

Burack has become a prominent voice in media and has been featured on several shows across OutKick and industry related podcasts and radio stations.


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    Maria Taylor’s entire plan is symbolic of the Left vision of America. In their minds, they can control white executives through their black employees, using fear and manufactured guilt. Without knowing it, Taylor racialized a network more than she helped herself. Next, look for the Left to find another pawn at AT&T, Comcast, and Netflix.

    Nothing more than typical gaslighting and pandering to AWM who can’t deal with a diverse world were you are nolonger seen as King of Mountain or even remotely threatening or intimidating.

    Typical Southern Political Strategy used in the Conservative sports media to pander to disenfranchised AWM who inherently have a biased against sports by people who don’t look like them. Instead of competing like men, they run to websites and cry like bitches

    • Hey Ball Don’t Lie, you’re the one crying like a little bitch. Plus racially attacking White males. Sounds like you believe the BULLSHIT that all white males who succeed did so because if their whiteness, not because they worked their asses off or just happened to be good at their jobs. Typical leftist bullshit right there. Kiss my white ass.

    • Oh Oh, looks who`s back and more black and angry than ever. It must really suck watching all your BLM bullshit getting stomped on in this website. Just admit it, you`re bitter because your not white. Hate to remind you, but when your white, you`re right. You forget that, boy? I`m just lovin` watching that train wreck over at Woke Center. They`re the perfect example of what happens when the left touches something: they ruin it. All just because they wanted to suck the black dick. Just remember that the next time your at the back of the bus…………..

      • . “Hate to remind you, but when your white, you`re right. You forget that, boy? I`m just lovin` watching that train wreck over at Woke Center. ”

        There it is, I knew you had it in you. Exactly what I expected. You actually believe that bullshit and hurts to know you lost the intimidation factor decades ago and you look like a Lil bitch in 2021. Believe me, I get it. It’s better to be a BBC than a LWC. It’s okay, you were cool back in the day but with the integration of sports we learned the truth. You not half the man you claim to be. As a matter of fact. You’re softer than “Drug store Cotton “. Thanks for letting us inside the mind of VERY FINE PEOPLE… It was just a matter of time. Thank you brother

        • You don`t know shit. You don`t mind coming on here with your AWM bullshit, but when someone calls you on it all of a sudden you`ve got a problem with it. Bottom line is you have no problem dishing it out, but you can`t take it. I`m know who I am and just fine with it. Go ahead and put that dick back in your mouth and take the knee, ,bitch. Better yet, get on both of them. I`m sure you`ve had plenty of practice.

  2. Great article, thanks.

    No matter where Ms. Taylor lands, how many of her new co-workers will trust her? Given what she did, holding on to a recording of a private conversation between two other co-workers for a year as a negotiating lever, how can she be considered someone that can be a confidant.

    No matter where she goes, no one will trust her. No only did she burn bridges with ABC/Disney/ESPN, she set herself up to have a very lonely life going forward.

  3. It would be interesting to know when she really made her decision; If she knew the floor of her contract at NBC was better than the 5 million ESPN was offering, did she plant the times article to either force ESPN to make her the top most paid talent, or did she do it to destroy Rachel Nichols on the way out.

  4. Not completely sure she got a better offer from NBC (no deal announced yet). She had to leave to save face, and I’m guessing cost herself some money. Can maybe make it up in endorsements with all the exposure she got, but NBC sports is contracting, not expanding. And there’s not that much there besides SNF once / week, and Olympics every two years.

  5. Pandora’s Box is a very educational story… too bad the woke clowns at cnn never read it.

    It’s hilarious watching those sanctimonious wussies in freefall and discovering that Wokeness on their back that they thought was a parachute is really just a knapsack full of dirty laundry*

    *(with apologies to the movie Fandango)

    ESPN executives, repeat the following phrase 5 times, quickly, into the camera: “I am sofa king we Todd did!”

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