The Mirror

Ron Fournier: I like Women But I Like Myself More

Betsy Rothstein Gossip blogger

TheAtlantic‘s Ron Fournier made a huge promise he knows he can’t keep: He won’t appear on any panel that is all male.

From this point forward, Fournier declares, he’ll avoid sausage fests … as much as that is possible. That is, unless he just can’t help himself.

On this point, he says it’s bound to happen.

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For example, what if MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” comes calling and it’s him, Mike Barnacle, Donny DeutschWillie Geist, Mark Halperin and Joe Scarborough? What’s Fournier going to do — let the guys and Atlantic Publisher David Bradley down?

In a story this week, he wrote about this so-called “pledge.”

To his credit, he admits in the headline that he won’t keep this promise.

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But the whole thing is so asinine Fournier — continuing on with his quest to have a perfect Washington image.

The ridiculous idea that he won’t follow came to him from Democratic activist Gina Glantz, 73, who runs GenderAvenger, a site that is dedicated to “diversifying the public square.” Fournier told her he’ll support her pledge except when he won’t support it.

That is, when it suits him and isn’t convenient for him and his image.

The pledge he was supposed to sign:

“I will not serve as a panelist at a public conference when there are no women on the panel.”

When he asked if this applied to TV shows, Glantz told him, “Hell, yes.”

This is when Fournier’s eyes glazed over.

He argued that being on TV was a “brand-building exercise” for modern journalists and their employers.

So Fournier came up with a genius idea. And by genius I mean, incredibly pointless and stupid.

He said he’d sign the pledge and write the column as a way of using his “leverage” to include females on his panels. He also said he’ll call the shows out on Twitter when and if this happens — we’ll see if this actually happens.

In other words, he expects bookers to give a crap about his non-pledge so much that they will just do what he never intended — which is to have women included on panels while he works on his brand.

In a word: GROSS.

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