Connecticut, where ESPN is based, is an at-will state, meaning “private employers can generally…fire employees for any reason, or for no reason at all.”

But, Connecticut’s General Statute 31-51q says private employers that discipline employees for the exercise of first amendment rights are “liable for damages.”

A 2015 Connecticut Supreme Court case, Trusz v. UBS Realty Investors ruled that someone in Connecticut that comments on “matters of ‘public concern’ are protected by state law.”