The New York Occasions reporter resigns after reporting on his racist remarks, however now “woke up” journalists are being accused
Media institutions continue to grapple with how exactly they should take responsibility for their role in sustaining systemic racism against an intractable culture that continues to vacillate over whether incidents of alleged racism are really that problematic or just evidence of “wakefulness.” “That have gone too far.
Alertness, of course, is the pejorative that “politically correct” has adopted to mock the consideration of the emotions of historically marginalized people, which apparently undermines the right of the average heterosexual white man to say something without social consequence.
The responses to longtime New York Times reporter Donald G. McNeil’s recent resignation from the paper are the latest evidence of the disorder in the institutions’ response to racial questions about the movements in 2020.
Last month, the Daily Beast revealed that McNeil used the n-word when leading a group of high school students on a Times trip to Peru in 2019. According to the story, several students and their parents wrote complaints claiming McNeil made “various” racist comments “during the trip that made them uncomfortable, including using the n-word, exchanging stereotypes about black teenagers and the statement that there is no such thing as a white privilege.
According to the Daily Beast report, NYT Executive Editor Dean Banquet admitted that he was made aware of the offensive remarks but said he had concluded that McNeil’s “intentions” after an internal investigation by the news company were neither be hateful nor malicious.
But the public spotlight on the disturbing incident understandably raised the concern of McNeil’s colleagues in The Times – the vast majority of them were not made aware of the allegations until the Daily Beast brought them to light, a background reporter told The Root.
The story goes on
The troubling report prompted over 150 employees to write to Banquet and other Times’ executives for more information and a more transparent response to the allegations.
“Despite the Times’ apparent commitment to diversity and inclusion, we have given an outstanding platform to someone who has chosen a language that is offensive and unacceptable by newsroom standards – a critical blow that covers a pandemic, the people concerned with color disproportionately “wrote. “He did this while representing the Times in front of students.”
Staff asked for an apology from McNeil, as well as a re-investigation of his alleged remarks about the student trip and recent complaints from colleagues who accused him of having had prejudice against people of color since then.
By last Friday, McNeil had submitted his resignation, apologizing for the use of a racist bow that he repeated during a discussion with a student about the consequences of using the n-word.
“I shouldn’t have done that,” wrote McNeil. “I originally thought that the context in which I used this ugly word could be defended. It is now clear to me that it is not possible. “
“We do not tolerate racist language, regardless of its intent,” Baquet and Managing Editor Joseph Kahn wrote to employees on Friday, according to the Washington Post.
Predictably, the official story has now become a story of the blatant injustice of a reporter losing his job for undue concern about “a single word.”
PEN America suggested this in a statement on McNeil’s resignation. “The Times readers rely on their journalists and editors to get their jobs done without worrying that a single erroneous statement could cost them their jobs.
“Recognizing that words can be harrowing and hurtful, even if they are not malicious, intentional, and contextual, is still important in evaluating the meaning of language and determining what consequences it should have. If reporter Donald McNeil appears to end his long career because of a single word, there is a risk that he will send a terrifying message, ”the statement continued.
Op-eds have been published in the New York Post and Newsweek, attributing McNeil’s departure to a group of reporters seeking a “takeover.”
The Daily Beast’s report of the resignation even accused Nikole Hannah-Jones of telling the Times leadership that they would call the parents and students who first complained about McNeil’s remarks to find out what exactly was being said.
Never mind that Hannah-Jones denies saying something similar, posting on Twitter on Monday that she has never requested McNeil’s resignation or resignation, but rather asked for transparency about the “multiple allegations” made against him and with sources within the Times wanted to talk about exactly what he is said to have said while traveling with students. The Root has asked Hannah-Jones for additional comments.
It doesn’t matter that the actual letter from the Times 150 employees (which the Daily Beast coded as “angry”) never called for McNeil’s eviction, but rather for further transparency of the allegations, the Times guidelines on non-discrimination and anti-discrimination. Discrimination asked – Harassment and an investigation into how racial prejudice can affect reporting.
Regardless, if the complex story of how we deal with racial issues in the workplace can be easily flattened to blame the vigilance and aftermath of the exposure of McNeil’s own actions, to which McNeil apparently responded to his resignation, can mistakenly be a so-called “crowd” attributed to black reporters who seek blood.
Meanwhile, the other allegations about the questionable comments McNeil made to a group of high-profile college students at work were brushed aside to spread a story about black people and their feelings of alertness during the attack.
How this situation has developed continues to be a bumpy road for any of us trying to fight racism in the future American institutions.