US: Fox Sports channel charged with discrimination for firing anti-gay pundit

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Fox Sports Southwest has been charged with religious discrimination for firing a pundit over his anti-gay views.

Craig James, a former NFL tailback, was let go last September just days after joining the company.

According to the New York Daily News, the Texas Workforce Commission today issued a charge of discrimination against Fox Sports Southwest on behalf of James and Christian organisation Liberty Institute.

James unsuccessfully ran for the US Senate in 2012, during which time he criticized another candidate for attending a gay pride parade, and said homosexuals will “have to answer to the Lord for their actions”.

A Fox Sports Southwest spokesman previously said: “We just asked ourselves how Craig’s statements would play in our human resources department. He couldn’t say those things here.”

James, who claims he is a victim of religious discrimination, told Associated Press: “That’s like a sucker punch. For someone to call you and offer you a job, praise your talents, your credentials, put you on the air the next day and fire you the following day, that’s like some kind of mean joke.”

He had previously worked as a sportscaster for ESPN, but stepped down before his senate run.

In December, a Fox News host claimed that “c*cksucking faggot” was not a homophobic slur.