In the wake of news breaking about the untimely death of basketball player Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna, one MSNBC reporter is receiving major backlash for her reporting of the tragic helicopter crash.
When Alison Morris was explaining what happened in the accident, she stuttered on-air. However, many fans misinterpreted her jumbled words as the “N-Word,” a racist slur against African American people.
While Alison was quick to clear-up this wasn’t the case, some fans are still skeptical and are calling for the reporter to be canceled and fired from MSNBC.
Controversy struck after fans misheard Morris’ comments on-air. Instead of hearing her say the “Los Angeles Lakers,” many fans took her stuttered statement as the “Los Angeles N—-rs.”
In her full sentence, Morris talks about Kobe Bryant’s death, saying, “He was the kind of athlete, the kind of star, that was perfectly cast on the Los Angeles stutters Nakers, on the Los Angeles Lakers.”
Realizing her words sounded jumbled and messy on-air, Morris hurried to end the segment after her mistake, furthering fan theories that she said something she shouldn’t have.
My brother just sent me this.
— Lucas Bishop (@DraconianFist) January 26, 2020
Alison Morris quickly attempted to clear her name and tell fans she misspoke and didn’t intentionally use a racist term. On Twitter, she explained she accidentally started to say the Knicks instead of the Lakers and it came out Knakers.
“Earlier today, while reporting on the tragic news of Kobe Bryant’s passing, I unfortunately stuttered on air, combining the names of the Knicks and the Lakers to say ‘Nakers.’ Please know I did not & would NEVER use a racist term. I apologize for the confusion this caused,” Morris wrote in her tweet.
Earlier today, while reporting on the tragic news of Kobe Bryant’s passing, I unfortunately stuttered on air, combining the names of the Knicks and the Lakers to say “Nakers.” Please know I did not & would NEVER use a racist term. I apologize for the confusion this caused.
— Alison Morris (@AlisonMorrisNOW) January 26, 2020
However, some fans are still mad and insistent that they know what they heard. In fact, so much so, that over 71,000 people have already signed a Change.org petition to get Alison fired.
The petition’s description reads, “During a time of the family, friends, and fans Grieving its unacceptable to call any person a N WORD. I need answers and national apology from MSNBC Reporter and the company. Reporter Alison Morris needs to take accountably for her actions.”
In the “Reasons for Signing” section, one user wrote, “She was very inappropriate she says she said nakers but yet there was no k in what she said.”
MSNBC anchor Alison Morris called, “Kobe Bryant A Nigger, on Live Television!” Don’t allow Them to get away with it!!!! They Hate Us!!!! White Supremacy Racist Is Alive And Well!!! #SeparationOrDeath I don’t want to be near my enslaver!!!! pic.twitter.com/zx2zcSqj10
— Sudan Muhammad (@sudans1love) January 27, 2020
Over on Twitter, users are split on their thoughts on the subject. Some users agreed with the petition and called Alison out for being “racist” and asked how she could “confuse the two” team names.
However, others defended the reporter, explaining her mistake is both common and easy to make.
One user wrote, “I work with children & adults (reading comp & illiteracy) and this is a very common mistake for any person, at any age. It’s called Spoonerism. It’s a transposition of letters – N from Nicks for L in Lakers. It’s awful how unforgiving people can be for a trip of the tongue.”