NBC’s Today anchor Katie Couric admitted to cutting segments of her interview with late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG) in order to “protect” her from her progressive viewer base.
As she recounts in her new memoir, RBG said during an interview, which aired in 2016, that kneeling during the U.S. national anthem seemed disrespectful.
Couric writes that she edited out a portion in which Ginsburg said that those who kneel during the national anthem are showing ‘contempt for a government that has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent life.’
Although the interview that aired that time does see RBG say that kneeling during the singing of the anthem seemed “foolish and disrespectful” to her, Couric writes that he omitted some other comments because he believed Ginsburg probably “didn’t fully understand the question.”
At the time, Ginsburg made comments about Colin Kaepernick, the former NFL player who became the controversial figure behind the national anthem protest against so-called “racial injustice.”
For Couric, comments like RBG’s were “unworthy of a fighter for equality” and she faced a “dilemma” hearing them.
The day after the meeting, the Supreme Court’s head of public affairs emailed Couric asking her to delete the comments since the justice had “misspoken.”
The anchor then called her friends David Brooks, a New York Times reporter, and David Westin, a former ABC News editor, for advice on the situation.
Brooks suggested that perhaps, because of Justice Ginsburg’s age, she had misunderstood the question and should remove the excerpt from the interview. Westin, for his part, advised him to air it as it was.
Couric’s book telling the RBG story, titled “Going There,” will be released on October 26.