April 25, 2018 at 12:41 pm EST | by Mariah Cooper
PFLAG rescinds award to MSNBC host Joy Reid amid ‘fabricated’ anti-gay posts

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PFLAG has rescinded MSNBC host Joy Reid’s Straight for Equality in the Media award amid the release of old homophobic blog posts from Reid’s former blog, the Reid Report.

In December, Twitter user Jamie_Maz unearthed posts published between 2007-2009 which accused former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist of being a closeted gay man. One post, which is tagged “gay politicians,” references Christ as “Miss Charlie.”

“What wouldn’t Charlie Crist do to become John McCain’s running mate? Cross ‘marry an actual woman’ off the list,’” reads another post.

Reid apologized for those posts in a statement saying, “I regret the way I addressed the complex issue of the closet and speculation on a person’s sexual orientation with a mocking tone and sarcasm. It was insensitive,tone-deaf and dumb.”

More posts have since been released including one that states “most straight people cringe at the sight of two men kissing,” and another that says straight people have an “intrinsic nature” to find homosexual sex “gross.”

Reid is now accusing hackers of publishing these “fabricated” homophobic posts to the blog.

“In December I learned that an unknown, external party accessed and manipulated material from my now-defunct blog, The Reid Report, to include offensive and hateful references that are fabricated and run counter to my personal beliefs and ideology,” Reid said in a statement to Mediate. “I began working with a cyber-security expert who first identified the unauthorized activity, and we notified federal law enforcement officials of the breach. The manipulated material seems to be part of an effort to taint my character with false information by distorting a blog that ended a decade ago.”

“Now that the site has been compromised I can state unequivocally that it does not represent the original entries. I hope that whoever corrupted the site recognizes the pain they have caused, not just to me, but to my family and communities that I care deeply about: LGBTQ, immigrants, people of color and other marginalized groups,” she added.

The Internet Archive investigated Reid’s claims but said in a statement on its website, “When we reviewed the archives, we found nothing to indicate tampering or hacking of the Wayback Machine versions.”

“We let Reid’s lawyers know that the information provided was not sufficient for us to verify claims of manipulation. Consequently, and due to Reid’s being a journalist (a very high-profile one, at that) and the journalistic nature of the blog archives, we declined to take down the archives,” the statement continued.

Despite Reid’s denial of the posts, PFLAG National president Jean Hodges released a statement that the award will no longer be presented to Reid.

“When we extended our invitation to Ms. Reid to honor her at our 45th anniversary celebration, we did so knowing about the blog posts from the late 2000s regarding Charlie Crist. We appreciated how she stepped up, took ownership, apologized for them, and did better—this is the behavior and approach we ask of any ally. However, in light of new information, and the ongoing investigation of that information, we must at this time rescind our award to Ms. Reid,” Hodges says.



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