Talk show host Tavis Smiley is suing the Public Broadcasting Service after the network pulled the plug on his show amidst sexual assault allegations last year. The suit, filed on Tuesday in Washington DC, accuses PBS of acting in ‘a racially hostile manner’ over the years, according to documents obtained from The Wrap.
‘For example, PBS harassed Mr. Smiley about inviting controversial African American figures on to his show. However, when Mr. Smiley brought equally controversial (if not more so) white figures, PBS remained silent,’ the suit details. It added: ‘This was not an isolated incident but happened multiple times during the fourteen years PBS and TS Media were in business together.’
The suit continues to assert that the network conducted a ‘poorly executed and incomplete’ investigation. The lawsuit continues: ‘Based on this incomplete, trumped-up investigation, and in violation of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, PBS decided to use a technical provision in its contract with TSM to stop distributing Tavis Smiley – the only nightly television show featuring a person of color as the host.