D.C. Radio Hosts Suspended for Transphobic Exchange


This morning I posted on the disgusting exchange between 980am ESPN radio shosts Steve Czaban and Andy Pollin in which they mocked trans college basketball player Gabrielle Ludwig.

They have been suspended. Wrote the station in a statement:

We strongly believe two of our employees crossed the line when discussing a transsexual person on their program last Thursday. Such intolerance and insensitivity will never be tolerated by this company. Due to the nature of this conversation, the pair have been temporarily removed from ESPN980's Sports Reporters program.

Writes GLAAD: "GLAAD has extended an offer to sit down with Czaban and Pollin and leaders from the transgender community to talk about the issues that affect transgender Americans, particularly those who are involved in athletics. It is important that the lesson they take away from this isn't simply 'don't make fun of transgender people or you'll get suspended.'  LGBT equality and inclusion in sports will never improve unless we are able to use these moments to educate each other and see each other as human beings."


  1. Emmy says

    Every time someone says something homophobic/transphobic, Glaad wants to sit down with them and have a ‘talk.’ I mean, i don’t really know how affective that sort of thing can be.

  2. anonymous says

    Earlier today the station was sending out a response including this statement:

    ” We strongly believe two of our employees crossed the line when they referred to Ms. Ludwig as “it” on their program last Thursday. Such intolerance and insensitivity will never be tolerated by this company. This situation was handled swiftly and internally. Due to the nature of their contracts, we are not at liberty to publicly discuss any actions that were taken.”

    So, they claimed at the time they took “swift” action and they couldn’t say what it was based on legal contracts.

    Now, 5 days after the incident, they are obviously taking further action and telling the public what that action is. It’s a whole new story after the sh*t hit the fan.

  3. says

    I agree with what you state and share your concerns. Still, if sitting down with some of the people they are potentially hurting with such comments doesn’t make a difference, nothing will. GLAAD can only do so much and I think education and knowledge is the best approach. But if seeing the face, touching the hand, hearing the voice of those who suffer because of their hate doesn’t move them, GLAAD can’t help them. Nobody can.

  4. Steve says

    While it might be really fun to slap the living Bee-Jezuz out of some of these cretins there are certain drawbacks. Though nothing is quite as soul-satisfying as an old fashion ass stomping certain people would say it puts us in the same league as the knukle-draggers we loathe.

  5. Francis says

    I agree with Emmy to a certain extent, but at the end of the day, people who are in positions to influence others making such horrible comments is not a good thing for us, and it’s for the best to show them exactly why their comments are offensive and at the very least, ensure they don’t make them again. If they can be fully enlightened, then that’s a major plus, but I doubt it’s actually expected.

  6. SeanInSeattle says

    Look, I subscribe to ESPN the Magazine and they are sincerely and consistently fair to us gays. Check out the monster article they did on Sandusky/Penn State a while back, or the little interview in the current number that interviews Nate Silver. I bring this up because I really believe ESPN supports GLBT rights with regard to the sports world. I, for one, trust them.

  7. says


    ESPN 980 is an independent ESPN affiliate, rather than an actual part of ESPN, which has *very* firmly denounced these two (more firmly than their own station) and has a pretty good track record on LGBT equality in the sports world.

  8. SeanInSeattle says


    I did not know that about ESPN 980. Good to know.

    In retrospect, I’m embarrassed I brought up Sandusky in any way… his case was not LGBT related. It was simple pedophilia.
    I apologize to Towleroad readership. Brain cramp.

  9. millerbeach says

    Isn’t it sad, in this day of alleged enlightenment, we still have Neanderthals roaming the planet? For once, can they just think about what they say BEFORE saying it, and preventing any more hallow “apologies”? Quite frankly, the “apologies” strike me about as genuine as a $3 bill. Just can the nonsense. You know you should not refer to another human being as “it”. If you don’t, you have no business being on the public airwaves. Hang up your headphones and go bag groceries…you do not deserve the plum assignment you somehow landed because you knew how to toss a ball back in college. If you can’t control your hate, then get off the air.