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Joy-Ann Reid Apologizes for Blog Posts—Again

MSNBC host Joy-Ann Reid at the Women in the World Summit at Lincoln Center in New York City on April 6, 2017
MSNBC host Joy-Ann Reid at the Women in the World Summit at Lincoln Center in New York City on April 6, 2017
Photo: Mary Altaffer (AP Images)

MSNBC host Joy-Ann Reid is apologizing (once again) for inflammatory posts unearthed from her now-defunct blog, the Reid Report.

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No, not those. These are new ones.

Among other things in these latest posts, BuzzFeed reports, Reid described Israel as a “Zionist regime,” suggested that the U.S. government was responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks and posted a photo with the head of Sen. John McCain photoshopped onto an image of Seung-Hui Cho, the shooter in the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre, captioned, “Baghdad John Strikes Again.”

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Reid also reportedly asserted that American citizens forced to evacuate during Hurricane Katrina should be the ones who rebuild New Orleans, not “low paid Mexican workers, legal and illegal.” In addition, she wrote that she believed that Mexicans did not migrate to the U.S. because of some romanticized “Statue of Libertyesque truism,” but because they needed money to send back to Mexico.

Reid’s most recent apology reads as follows, according to BuzzFeed:

While I published my blog, starting in 2005, I wrote thousands of posts in real time on the issues of the day. There are things I deeply regret and am embarrassed by, things I would have said differently and issues where my position has changed. Today I’m sincerely apologizing again.

I’m sorry for the collateral damage and pain this is causing individuals and communities caught in the crossfire.

To be clear, I have the highest respect for Sen. McCain as a public servant and patriot and wish him and his family the best. I have reached out to Meghan McCain and will continue to do so. She is a former on-air colleague and I feel deeply for her and her family.

I’ve also spoken openly about my evolution on many issues and know that I’m a better person today than I was over a decade ago. I am the daughter of immigrants and have worked to be a strong ally of these communities. There is no question in my mind that Al Qaeda perpetrated the 9/11 attacks or about Israel’s right to its sovereignty.

I believe the totality of my work attests to my ideals and I continue to grow every day.

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Reid has been apologizing since the first homophobic and transphobic blog posts were exposed in December 2017. Unfortunately for her, similar posts came to light in April. Reid blamed the posts on a shadowy hacker—a claim she eventually abandoned because the cybersecurity expert she hired could not prove that a hacking occurred. She then apologized again for her previously bigoted views, while still insisting that she didn’t remember writing some of the posts.

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MSNBC responded Friday after the latest blog discoveries.

“Some of the things written by Joy on her old blog are obviously hateful and hurtful,” the network said, BuzzFeed reports. “They are not reflective of the colleague and friend we have known at MSNBC for the past seven years. Joy has apologized publicly and privately and said she has grown and evolved in the many years since, and we know this to be true.”

Mother. Wife. Writer. Journalist. Bubber's Daughter.

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DISCUSSION

magicswordking
magicswordking

Oh boy.

I’m of a few minds. Mind one, Joy Reid’s voice is a strong and needed one in the world of 2018. I find her commentary witty, insightful, and generally appreciate what she has to offer.

Mind two, someone’s clearly got it out for her. Many someones. I don’t buy the hacking angle for a second, seriously “I was hacked” as an excuse is pretty pathetic, but this digging is clearly motivated by ideology and likely gender and race.

Mind three, despite the obvious source of the digging, this is all really hurting her credibility and voice in a way that I don’t know she can really endure. Her initial evasion, later silence and reluctance to really come out and reckon with this, in depth and at length is hurting her more than anything, I think.

Mind the fourth, and I think most important: We’re entering into a time in which it will quickly become impossible for anyone to have a spotless record. Everyone’s been an asshole to someone and thanks to the internet, social media, etc, it’s better documented than ever before. Most of us have probably done and said some ignorant shit that we wouldn’t want hanging over our whole futures. This sort of thing is only going to happen more often in the future, and pretty soon we’ll hit a point where we’re going to have to figure out just what we do and don’t hold against people from their online histories.

I mean, I was loudly wrong about a lot of shit in my youth. If someone were to dig up chat logs from when I was 16 and talking purely out of my ass about gender, for instance, I’d look like a monster. But that’s not me anymore, that’s fully half my life ago. I don’t think any of this stuff is Joy Reid anymore, either, though she was older when she wrote it. People grow. To hold our adult lives hostage by the words of our incomplete selves is unnecessarily cruel. I don’t know where to draw this line. I don’t know if anyone knows. But we should think about it and keep it in mind.