The woke have turned on each other at the Washington Post in what must rank as the most entertaining story of last week.
The trouble began when reporter David Weigel retweeted a joke by YouTuber Cam Harless. Fox News has that story:
Washington Post reporter Felicia Sonmez put her paper on blast after one of her colleagues shared a tweet mocking women.
Sonmez shared a screenshot of a tweet written by YouTube host Cam Harless, who said, “Every girl is bi. You just have to figure out if it’s polar or sexual.”
That was retweeted by fellow reporter David Weigel.
“Fantastic to work at a news outlet where retweets like this are allowed!” Sonmez reacted.
Washington Post’s Chief Communications Officer Kris Coratti told Fox News, “Editors have made clear to the staff that the tweet was reprehensible and demanding language or actions like that will not be tolerated.”
Weigel also removed the retweet from his Twitter page and issued an apology.
“I just removed a retweet of an offensive joke. I apologise and did not mean to cause any harm,” Weigel wrote.
That apology wasn’t enough to save Weigel, who was duly suspended for one month last Monday. CNN has more on that story.
The Washington Post has suspended reporter David Weigel for one month without pay for retweeting a sexist joke, two people familiar with the matter told CNN on Monday.
Weigel did not respond to a request for comment, but an out-of-office reply from his Post email address said that he would return to work on July 5th. Weigel apologised publicly last week for the retweet, saying he “did not mean to cause any harm”.
A spokesperson for the Post declined to comment, citing a need for privacy regarding personnel matters.
Weigel’s retweet was spotlighted publicly by his colleague, Felicia Sonmez, who recently had a discrimination lawsuit against the paper dismissed, a decision her attorney has said she plans to appeal.
Sonmez sarcastically wrote on Twitter on Friday that it is “fantastic to work at a news outlet where retweets like this are allowed”. She attached a screen grab showing Weigel’s retweet, which was of a tweet from YouTuber Cam Harless, who joked, “Every girl is bi. You just have to figure out if it’s polar or sexual.”
Sonmez, according to messages obtained by CNN, also confronted Weigel in an internal company Slack channel. She tagged him and wrote, “I’m sorry but what is this?”
Sonmez added in the Slack channel that the retweet sent “a confusing message about what the Post’s values are.”
Others on Friday joined the discussion in the Slack channel, prompting national editor Matea Gold to write, “I just want to assure all of you that the Post is committed to maintaining a respectful workplace for everyone. We do not tolerate demeaning language or actions.”
The Post’s chief spokesperson, Kris Coratti, also issued a statement to the press that said, “Editors have made clear to the staff that the tweet was reprehensible and demeaning language or actions like that will not be tolerated.”
But the public and private admonishment of Weigel’s retweet has failed to quell tension inside the Post.
Executive Editor Sally Buzbee issued a memo urging everyone to calm down and, for a while, that seemed to work, with various Post reporters tweeting how proud they were to work at such a fine paper and how “collegial” the atmosphere in the newsroom was. Vanity Fair takes up that story.
On Tuesday afternoon, Washington Post reporter Josh Dawsey tweeted that he was “proud” to work at the paper, a place “filled with many terrific people who are smart and collegial”. Four minutes later, reporter Rosalind Helderman, too, tweeted that she was “proud” to work at the Post, which is “always striving to be better than it was yesterday”. Six minutes later, another reporter, Amy Gardner, tweeted how she was “proud” to work at the paper, followed by other top journalists at the publication, such as Matt Viser, Carol Leonnig, and Dan Balz.
The public outpouring of Post pride – which I’m told political reporters were urging one another to take part in – followed executive editor Sally Buzbee’s memo reiterating workplace policies and promoting collegiality among staff. The memo dropped following a few days at the Post that have been, as one reporter described it, a “clusterfuck”.
But it appears Felecia Sonmez didn’t get the memo – or, she did, but she found it offensive. Or something. Fox News has more.
Sonmez mocked the “collegial” descriptor, highlighting Post reporter Jose A. Del Real, who had blocked her on Twitter after he was the first among the paper’s staff to criticize her for publicly shaming Weigel, which sparked a feud between the two.
“So I hear The Washington Post is a collegial workplace,” Sonmez quipped.
She then shared screenshots of Del Real’s comments towards her, writing, “These tweets falsely accusing me of ‘clout chasing’, ‘bullying’, ‘cruelty’ and directing an ‘eager mob’ to carry out ‘a barrage online abuse’ are still up… even after I repeatedly raised them to management and noted that I’ve been receiving threats and abuse. Collegial!”
On Friday, Sally Buzbee had had enough and fired Sonmez. MailOnline has more on that.
Sonmez was let go for ‘misconduct that includes insubordination, maligning your co-workers online and violating The Post’s standards on workplace collegiality and inclusivity,’ according to a widely reported termination email.
The Washington Post reports that Sonmez had been due to ‘play a key role’ in their reporting on the prime time January 6th riot hearings today before she was fired.
On the day she was let go, Sonmez tweeted: “I care deeply about my colleagues, and I want this institution to provide support for all employees. Right now, The Post is a place where many of us fear our trauma will be used against us, based on the company’s past actions.”
Sonmez, 39, was fired after a week where she publicly scrapped with several of her colleagues and accused management of failing to support female staff and only protecting “white stars”. …
Those who said they were proud were called out by Sonmez in a Twitter thread on Thursday in which she pointed out that they were ‘all white’ and were “among the ‘stars’ who ‘get away with murder’ on social media”.
Sonmez also said: “Of course The Washington Post is a great workplace. It is a great workplace for them. The system is working for them. What about for everyone else? The General Assignment team? The Morning Mix team? The newsletter researchers?”
When The Post’s Lisa Rein tweeted at Sonmez saying: “Please stop.” Sonmez replied: “Do you have any idea of the torrent of abuse I’m facing right now?”
In another exchange, Sonmez criticized national editor Matea Gold for suggesting that reporters take time to “look after their mental health” following the shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde in May.
Sonmez said that she was once reprimanded for telling an editor that she “needed to take a walk around the block after reading a difficult story”.
No doubt Sonmez will sue the Post for firing her – in addition to appealing her case for harassment against the Post in connection with her suspension over another story.
It goes without saying that this woke warrior, who is such a ferocious critic of pro-white bias at her former newspaper, is herself white.