It’s HER fault

Yes it’s just a bed of roses being a woman in journalism or any other bit of public life.

It was supposed to be an upbeat town hall to rally the newsroom, as Washington Post leaders highlighted their moves to defend reporter SEUNG MIN KIM from internet trolls. But sources tell us the March 16 Zoom meeting with hundreds of staffers went off the rails briefly when FELICIA SONMEZ, a breaking news reporter who has spoken openly about her experience as a sexual assault survivor, typed a pointed comment in the chat box: “I wish editors had publicly supported me in the same way.”

Sonmez was referring to an incident that occurred the day KOBE BRYANT died in January 2020. Former top editor MARTY BARON and upper management suspended Sonmez for tweeting a reminder that the basketball legend being showered in praise had also been accused of raping a woman. The Post retracted the suspension after more than 300 reporters signed a letter demanding her reinstatement. It also sent physical protection for Sonmez, who had to leave her house after her Bryant missive went viral and she received death threats.

Well you can see their issue though. On the one hand, a basketball legend. On the other hand, some woman journalist. You do the math. Male athletes are important. Female journalists are not. Female anythings are not, to be perfectly honest.

More than a year after the incident, the wounds are still fresh. On Friday night, Sonmez publicly criticized her boss, national editor STEVEN GINSBERG, after he was quoted in a Vanity Fair piece about the need to support female journalists when they’re subjected to harassment online. “Wish the same Post editor who is quoted in this piece supported me when I was doxxed and had to leave my home,” she wrote on Twitter, adding Ginsberg’s handle. (The decision to suspend her was made by Baron.)

She didn’t stop there. Sonmez also publicized that she is barred from writing about anything related to sexual misconduct or #MeToo. According to several people familiar with the decision, the prohibition began around the time that sexual misconduct allegations surfaced against Supreme Court Justice BRETT KAVANAUGH, and continued recently with news about Rep. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D-N.Y.) acknowledging she is a survivor of assault as well as the harassment allegations against New York Gov. ANDREW CUOMO.

Well if that’s their policy it means no female journalists can report on sexual assault, because all women have experienced it. Nice little racket. Also nice little incentive for men who like to grab them by the pussy to do it to every female journalist they can reach, so that no woman can cover the story. Also nice way to damage the careers of all female journalists.

Sonmez, according to emails obtained by Playbook, has implored senior management at the Post to reverse the coverage ban. In an email to Ginsberg and his deputies last May, she wrote that “it is humiliating to again and again have to tell my colleagues and editors that I am not allowed to do my job fully because I was assaulted.”

Punish the victim to protect the perps. Nice all around.

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