USA Today suspended law professor and columnist Glenn Reynolds after he tweeted “run them down,” referring to the protesters in Charlotte, North Carolina Sept. 21.
USA Today editorial page editor Bill Sternberg said in a statement, which was sent to iMediaEthics, that the tweet was “a violation” of USA Today‘s standards “and can be interpreted as an incitement to violence.” As such, Sternberg said Reynolds was suspended for a month. iMediaEthics has contacted Reynolds for comment.
The full statement from Sternberg read:
“USA TODAY expects its columnists to provide thoughtful, reasoned contributions to the national conversation, on all platforms. Glenn Reynolds’ “Run them down” tweet, in response to a news report about protesters in Charlotte stopping traffic and surrounding vehicles, was a violation of that standard and can be interpreted as an incitement to violence. Reynolds, a law professor at the University of Tennessee who writes twice a week for USA TODAY, has apologized. His column has been suspended for one month.”
In a statement on USA Today‘s website, Reynolds said, “I didn’t live up to my own standards, and I didn’t meet USA Today‘s standards. For that I apologize.”
Of his tweet’s intention, Reynolds said he didn’t mean for readers to be “going out of their way to run down protestors.”
“I meant no such thing, and I’m sorry it seemed I did,” Reynolds wrote. “What I meant is that drivers who feel their lives are in danger from a violent mob should not stop their vehicles.” Reynolds said he should have written “Keep driving” or “Don’t stop,” and that he has “always supported peaceful protests, speaking out against police militarization and excessive police violence.”
Reynolds expressed that sentiment on his blog as well.
Reynolds was briefly suspended from Twitter over the tweet but reinstated after he deleted the tweet in question.
Twitter has unblocked my account on condition of deleting the offending tweet. I've done so, but it's here:: https://t.co/DDkZd2el6Y
— Instapundit.com (@instapundit) September 22, 2016
Hat Tip: Politico