13 votes

Teen Vogue editor resigns after fury over racist tweets

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15 comments

  1. [13]
    skullkid2424
    Link
    This is a touchy subject, so I'm not even sure I want to comment on it. This seems like a sad story of someone saying/doing a dumb and harmful thing as a teenager, then owning up to it,...

    This is a touchy subject, so I'm not even sure I want to comment on it. This seems like a sad story of someone saying/doing a dumb and harmful thing as a teenager, then owning up to it, apologizing for it, learning/growing from it, and going beyond to do work to counteract any damage done. Isn't this exactly what we want? Isn't this the behavior that should come from such a thing? Or is there no way to make up for past wrongs and recover?

    Granted, I'm not really aware of the nuances of this particular issue beyond the article, so I could be missing things. But this seems like something that the kind of repentance that should be looking on favorably...

    23 votes
    1. [12]
      Gaywallet
      Link Parent
      Some of the content is not made available on the website so it's hard to judge everything in context, but the comments directed at her Asian TA are quite blatant racism - not uninformed or making...

      Some of the content is not made available on the website so it's hard to judge everything in context, but the comments directed at her Asian TA are quite blatant racism - not uninformed or making a bad joke, just straight up being mean in a racist way. Given this history, I'd be asking what she has done to learn and grow from this. I wish I had more context of the homophobic tweets, because I think that would help to provide context on how I should feel about her. Was she also mean or simply uninformed?

      She provided a statement, but so does everyone who's caught being racist publicly who wants to keep their job. What has she done to grow? What work did she do to counteract the damage she's done? She claims that she's met with leaders.... but who were they? When did she meet with them? What do they have to say about her and her character?

      I'm not okay with empty platitudes. I want to see action. While I want to give her the benefit of the doubt, I'm still left quite skeptical of what she's saying and I understand why others would feel similarly too.

      7 votes
      1. [10]
        AugustusFerdinand
        Link Parent
        I'll play devil's racist advocate... You want specifics about what she's done to counteract the damage. I want specifics on what damage a decade old tweet of a immature teenager has done. It's...

        I'll play devil's racist advocate...

        What work did she do to counteract the damage she's done?

        You want specifics about what she's done to counteract the damage. I want specifics on what damage a decade old tweet of a immature teenager has done. It's difficult if not impossible to neutralize damage if one does not know the extent of it.

        17 votes
        1. [9]
          Gaywallet
          Link Parent
          From the article, it sounds like these background checks and conversations have been going on for some time. If she wanted to make up for her past, I would expect to see this through her actions,...

          From the article, it sounds like these background checks and conversations have been going on for some time. If she wanted to make up for her past, I would expect to see this through her actions, not her words. She wants a high profile job at a high profile company, this is where the bar is set. Nothing is stopping her from working on it today. Nothing stopped her from working on it in the past. Yes, I think she didn't realize the full extent of the damage she was causing and that's a failing of society to teach her it's wrong and bad and how to make amends, but I also think she's not exactly being blocked from living a comfortable life.

          2 votes
          1. [8]
            AugustusFerdinand
            Link Parent
            Not to set this drum machine on repeat, but that doesn't answer the question. It gets back to the question of what does that entail? Damage has to be quantified in order for restitution to be...

            Not to set this drum machine on repeat, but that doesn't answer the question.

            If she wanted to make up for her past, I would expect to see this through her actions, not her words. [...] I think she didn't realize the full extent of the damage she was causing...

            It gets back to the question of what does that entail? Damage has to be quantified in order for restitution to be calculated.

            6 votes
            1. [2]
              rosco
              Link Parent
              Jumping in here if it's ok. To answer your question specifically, I think the damage could be looked at in terms of the impact those tweets have today. I would imagine it would be damaging to her...

              Jumping in here if it's ok. To answer your question specifically, I think the damage could be looked at in terms of the impact those tweets have today. I would imagine it would be damaging to her employees who identify with the groups she has disparaged in the past. If I were a gay person or a person of Asian decent on her team and found out about these tweets I think it would be damaging to both my relationship with her and possibly the organization as a whole. I could assume that there is a bias, be conscious or unconscious, would affect her opinion of my work and influence how she chooses to hire/promote. So while you want to quantify the effects of the tweets, which is near impossible to tangibly do, it doesn't mean there aren't any. I agree with Gaywallet that we don't need to have some sort of moral accounting, it would just be nice to see action in the right direction. I agree that we all did stupid things as teenagers, but if the past gets brought up the onus is on the guilty individual to demonstrate change. Does she work in communities she previously disparaged? Does she advocate for visibility of those groups in the magazine? To echo Gaywallet on this, an apology and amorphous meeting don't seem like genuine "work" to establish a change in mindset or behavior.

              4 votes
              1. AugustusFerdinand
                Link Parent
                Absolutely okay to do so, I'm here for the debate itself, now onto DRA mode: I disagree, I believe it would not be damaging to her employees, but rather damaging to her reputation with them, which...

                Absolutely okay to do so, I'm here for the debate itself, now onto DRA mode:

                To answer your question specifically, I think the damage could be looked at in terms of the impact those tweets have today. I would imagine it would be damaging to her employees who identify with the groups she has disparaged in the past.

                I disagree, I believe it would not be damaging to her employees, but rather damaging to her reputation with them, which is a problem she has to solve in that leadership role. As the article states her past had been brought up in discussions with the organization and they deemed her actions since then to be evidence that the past indiscretions are not reflected in the individual of today.

                If I were a gay person or a person of Asian decent on her team and found out about these tweets I think it would be damaging to both my relationship with her and possibly the organization as a whole. I could assume that there is a bias, be conscious or unconscious, would affect her opinion of my work and influence how she chooses to hire/promote.

                Agreed. I fully believe that any new hire is required to prove themselves within the organization, this extends from the entry level to the top. If my company hires a new CFO I'm going to expect them to understand financials befitting their position and failure to do so should be brought to light, but the watching will be done under the guise of good faith and that they aren't an idiot. Now if in their first meeting they say something obviously wrong or stupid, then that aspect is to be addressed at the time and watched closely as time goes on.

                The same goes with bias. Everyone is to be approached equally and as if they treat all equally. Now, admittedly, in this case she has said something obviously wrong and stupid, it has been addressed, and now she's to be scrutinized on that basis. Should she elect to exercise that bias, be it conscious or unconscious, it's time to ring the bell.

                So while you want to quantify the effects of the tweets, which is near impossible to tangibly do, it doesn't mean there aren't any. I agree with Gaywallet that we don't need to have some sort of moral accounting, it would just be nice to see action in the right direction.

                I'm not disagreeing with the "action in the right direction", but I will argue that apologies, expressed regret, time, and lack of repeated mistake is such. I'm not saying it should be forgotten by any measure, but the amount of time passed and the age at which it was said must be taken into account. If she was 40 and said it at 30, fuck it, burn her at the stake. But as you stated she was a stupid teenager that said something stupid and immature. I agree that "a meeting and apology" doesn't seem like genuine work to establish a change in mindset or behavior, if the behavior in question was recent, but it's not. My point is that lack of being a, shall we say, repeat offender over the course of a decade, during which the greatest leaps in a person's maturity are made, is demonstration of change when all things are taken into context.

                She was legally a minor at the time of the tweet (perhaps we shouldn't let children on social media at all, but that's another conversation), there's an entire separate set of legal rules for minors for a reason and that is because even our incredibly flawed legal system understands that immature idiots make immature idiotic choices and shouldn't be punished for their entire lives because of it. Is ten years of racism and homophobic parole enough?

                3 votes
            2. [5]
              Gaywallet
              Link Parent
              I'm not interested in moral calculus. I'm not setting out to define absolute values to good and bad actions. I think this would be a useful discussion if we had some context of things she had...

              I'm not interested in moral calculus. I'm not setting out to define absolute values to good and bad actions. I think this would be a useful discussion if we had some context of things she had done, but so far the only action she has done is to apologize. An apology absent action is not restitution in my eyes.

              1 vote
              1. [4]
                AugustusFerdinand
                Link Parent
                Okay, so have you looked to see what, if anything, she has done beyond apologizing to calculate the restitution you believe is due or are you relying purely on the NYT article to defend her? Which...

                Okay, so have you looked to see what, if anything, she has done beyond apologizing to calculate the restitution you believe is due or are you relying purely on the NYT article to defend her? Which is outside the article's purpose.

                10 votes
                1. [3]
                  suspended
                  Link Parent
                  Would Tildes users be interested in a story of deep regret? I believe that I have been given an incredible opportunity. Many years ago I did not understand this. Since then, many years later...

                  Would Tildes users be interested in a story of deep regret? I believe that I have been given an incredible opportunity. Many years ago I did not understand this. Since then, many years later (obviously), I've come to realize some of this (I haven't completely wrapped my head around this 'opportunity', etc).

                  In short, I made a tragic/horrific mistake before I knew of the import of what I was to become or understand about my self.

                  3 votes
                  1. [2]
                    AugustusFerdinand
                    Link Parent
                    Some might, I would not. Why? Because so long as you've learned from the mistake, reconciled it (be it internally or externally), and know it was wrong along with demonstrated action to not repeat...

                    Some might, I would not.

                    Why?

                    Because so long as you've learned from the mistake, reconciled it (be it internally or externally), and know it was wrong along with demonstrated action to not repeat it, then I think you've paid the price so to speak. I choose not to judge others by their past, but by the content of their character today.

                    I've done bad things, I was a piece of shit teenager that didn't understand what I was doing hurt others. They're memories I wish I could erase as I am reminded of them relatively regularly, I can't apologize for them, but I am my own worst critic and torture myself over it when reminded of what I did. However, I am no longer that person. I am not that idiot teenager. I know I would never do it again. In the grand scheme of things it was incredibly minor, it's unlikely that the offended party even remembers it, but it still weighs on my conscience and because it does I am a different and better person because of it. It is our mistakes that shape us, so long as we recognize them.

                    If a story of deep regret is catharsis that you need, then feel free to share. I'm just providing my view that it won't change my opinion of you as who you were when you committed the mistake is not who you are today as evidenced by your admission of it.

                    5 votes
                    1. monarda
                      Link Parent
                      Words like you have just written, is what allows me to continue at all in society. As an example, I was in a particularly depressed mood one day, riding to work in my car with my roommate at the...

                      Words like you have just written, is what allows me to continue at all in society. As an example, I was in a particularly depressed mood one day, riding to work in my car with my roommate at the time, and said, "People suck." She replied to the affect of, "Yeah, but they are amazing and beautiful too." And it is the type of words that you just wrote that I was able to reflect upon and realize that she stated truth. Thank you.

                      3 votes
                    2. Removed by admin: 4 comments by 3 users
                      Link Parent
      2. skullkid2424
        Link Parent
        Fair enough. I haven't seen the exact statements, so I could be unknowingly downplaying them in my assumptions of how bad they were. Thats a bit of a generic statement and quite possibly biased...

        Fair enough. I haven't seen the exact statements, so I could be unknowingly downplaying them in my assumptions of how bad they were.

        Ms. McCammond said her “past tweets have overshadowed the work I’ve done to highlight the people and issues that I care about.”

        Thats a bit of a generic statement and quite possibly biased coming from her, but it seems to imply shes taken actions since then - though as you point out, there are no details on what shes done to prove it. The article seems to lean a bit in her favor, though perhaps thats me imagining things as well.

        Either way, this is probably why I should just ignore these types of articles. I'm already not on "real" social media, it doesn't really change anything for me, and I'll simply have a very narrow and possibly biased lens into the issue at hand.

        4 votes
  2. mrbig
    (edited )
    Link
    I don't think it makes sense to punish an adult for something they did when they were 17. I was a sexist asshole when I was 17. Luckily, Twitter did not exist.

    I don't think it makes sense to punish an adult for something they did when they were 17. I was a sexist asshole when I was 17. Luckily, Twitter did not exist.

    17 votes
  3. monarda
    Link
    I've talked before about being racist, and how every time I think I'm not thinking or doing racist shit anymore, I'll notice I've acted or thought in a way that is still racist. As a white woman I...

    I've talked before about being racist, and how every time I think I'm not thinking or doing racist shit anymore, I'll notice I've acted or thought in a way that is still racist. As a white woman I can only guess at the harm I have done. I actively strive to be better, but so much of the being better is private and inside my own mind. It would also be near impossible to quantify on a scale of how better I am now to how I was 5 years or 20 years ago. I have tried to give perspective, but at the end of the day, what happens internally is something "you" have to take my word for.

    The article states that in 2019 she apologized for what she had said and how she had acted, and deleted those things. The article does not mention how she had conducted herself between the time of those posts and today, but since there doesn't seem to be any discussion of that time frame, I'm going to assume that she has behaved better. It did say that she met with many people inside of vogue and discussed some of those things from the past in interviews.

    I'm used to being judged by how I used to be, it's one of the reasons I choose to hermit myself and lie about my past when pressed face to face. It's awful not to be allowed to grow and fulfill potential because of choices made when ignorant.

    13 votes