The Washington Post has reprimanded one of its best editors for its tweet criticizing Pittsburgh Steelers defender Ben Rothlisberger.
Lori Montgomery, the newspaper’s business editor, fell into the hot water after posting a deleted tweet in response to an SF Gate column pointing to Roethlisberger’s rape and misconduct, the Wall Street Journal reported.
“The only interesting aspect of this column is how easily it can be denied and the full FoS,” Montgomery, of Pittsburgh, wrote about the sports column published last week.
SF Gate writer Drew Magari wrote in his column “Thank You, Ben Rothlisberger … for being a real idiot” that Roethlisberger was “cheerful” and dreamed that “he would never be born”. He then listed the rape charges against Roethlisberger by at least two different women, as well as other charges of “warrior” conduct.
Roethlisberger denied any wrongdoing.
The long-time Steelers defender could retire at the end of this season. Magari’s column came just hours after the two-time Super Bowl winner was believed to be the last home game at Heinz Field.
A spokesman for the Post told the Journal that Montgomery was given a verbal warning last weekend. The newspaper also plans to revise its social media policy once the post of standards editor is filled.
Montgomery’s tweet, linked to an article in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, was criticized by Twitter users and his own newspaper staff. He then deleted it and said he regretted posting a message indicating that Roethlisberger was suspicious of the alleged victims.
This, in particular, slightly offended the Post journalist Felicia Sonmez, who tweeted: “Sincerely, @lorimontgomery, this @drewmagary column contains facts about sexual harassment charges against Ben Roethlisberger, which were reported by the Washington Post. confirms his story. “
In a subsequent tweet, Sonmez, who covered national policy for the Post, said Montgomery had been named as a defendant in a discriminatory lawsuit filed against the newspaper in July.
Sonmez, who once accused a Los Angeles Times reporter of assaulting him in China, says he filed a lawsuit after his employer claimed he had twice banned him from covering stories of sexual harassment.
He said the newspaper forbade him to write about the charges against him at a confirmation hearing of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Sonmez was also on vacation for tweeting rape allegations against Kobe Bryant just hours after the basketball star died in a helicopter crash.
The Post asked the court to dismiss the lawsuit, saying Sonmez’s allegations were nothing more than a campaign against “journalism and editorial policy.”