Hemal Jhaveri, a race and inclusion editor at USA Today Sports, announced Friday she was fired after falsely claiming an “angry white man” was responsible for Monday’s mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado.
“[I]t’s always an angry white man. always,” Jhaveri tweeted Monday evening before police identified the shooter as 21-year-old Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa, a migrant from Syria.
Jhaveri said in a Medium post on Friday that her tweet was a “dashed off over-generalization” after pictures of the shooter surfaced online.
I’m shocked and appalled that the Race and Inclusion editor at a major newspaper, is, in fact, a racist. (And pronouns in bio, of course.) pic.twitter.com/lhP7mKTRj6
— Dave Rubin (@RubinReport) March 23, 2021
“It was a careless error of judgment, sent at a heated time, that doesn’t represent my commitment to racial equality,” Jhaveri said. “I regret sending it. I apologized and deleted the tweet.”
She said an email announcing her firing stated she had previously been disciplined for her conduct on social media.
“My previous tweets were flagged not for inaccuracy or for political bias, but for publicly naming whiteness as a defining problem,” Jhaveri said. “That is something USA TODAY, and many other newsrooms across the country, can not tolerate.”
Hi friends. Some news.
I am no longer working at For The Win and USA TODAY. Here’s what happened. https://t.co/0EWw9PQmzq
— Hemal Jhaveri (@hemjhaveri) March 26, 2021
Jhaveri also said she was subjected to “constant micro-aggressions and outright racist remarks from the majority white staff” during her eight-year tenure at USA Today.
Jhaveri said she was twice asked not to insert language that would alienate white readers when editing stories.
She also said she was once asked by a new manager where she was “originally from” upon their first meeting. That same manager later asked her what it was like to be Indian upon learning that his daughter was going to marry an Indian man, Jhaveri said.
“This is not about bias, or keeping personal opinions off of Twitter. It’s about challenging whiteness and being punished for it,” Jhaveri wrote.
“Like many places, USA TODAY values ‘equality and inclusion,’ but only as long as it knows its rightful place, which is subservient to white authority,” she added.
USA Today did not return a request for comment.
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