Wednesday, April 25, 2018

PFLAG Rescinds Award To MSNBC's Joy Reid Over Reports Of More Anti-LGBT Blog Posts

MSNBC host Joy Reid

MSNBC host Joy Reid says her now-defunct blog from years ago has been hacked and anti-LGBT content inserted into the archives.

From HuffPost:

A cybersecurity expert working with Reid said in a statement to HuffPost on Tuesday that he found evidence five months ago of “suspicious activity” and that the alleged hacking was the subject of an ongoing federal investigation.

Jonathan Nichols, identified as an independent security consultant by a representative of MSNBC, said the posts in question had been “entered with suspicious formatting and time stamps.”

Reid had previously apologized in December for writing homophobic blog posts after Twitter user @Jamie_Maz tweeted screenshots of them. In those posts ― written in 2007 for The Reid Report, a politics blog Reid kept during her years as a morning talk show host in Florida ― she repeatedly accused then-Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (D) of being a closeted gay man.

“As someone who is not a member of the LGBT community, 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,” Reid wrote in her statement in December. “It was insensitive, tone deaf and dumb.”

Last week, @Jamie_Maz shared new screenshots that allegedly feature dozens more anti-LGBTQ posts from Reid’s old blog, as Mediaite first reported on Monday. While the blog itself has been shut down for several years, the amateur sleuth allegedly accessed the posts via the Internet Archive, a nonprofit dedicated to building a massive digital library known as the Wayback Machine.

Some of the most damning posts claimed “most straight people cringe at the sight of two men kissing” and that “adult gay men tend to be attracted to very young, post-pubescent types.”

As a result of the newly discovered blog posts, PFLAG National — the nation’s first and largest organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people, their families, and allies — has rescinded its Straight for Equality in Media award to Reid.

Reid has issued this statement about the alleged hacks:

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.

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.

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