NYT Staffer ‘Spat’ On In Public Over Paper’s Coverage Of Trans Issue

(Photo by ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)

Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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A New York Times (NYT) employee was “spat” on in public over the outlet’s coverage of transgender issues, according to the paper’s publisher.

NYT publisher A.G. Sulzberger spoke Thursday at the annual State of the Times and addressed the “types of harassment that [their] journalists have faced,” before noting a Feb. 19 incident in which an employee was “spat” on.

“We’ve documented the worrying wave of anti-trans legislation advancing in statehouses across the country; we’ve detailed the horrific violence and discrimination trans people face; and we’ve illuminated the lives and experiences of trans people here and around the world,” Sulzberger said.

“And since our reporters involved in this coverage have also faced nonstop attacks, let me also say that the price of reporting fairly and independently about any topic should not be months of threats and harassment,” he continued. “We even had a colleague involved in this coverage confronted in her neighborhood last weekend and spat on.”

“I cannot tell you how troubled I am by how common it has become for newsroom colleagues who are simply doing their jobs — and doing them with distinction — to be targeted by activist campaigns aimed at intimidation.” (RELATED: REPORT: New York Times Will Commence Disciplinary Hearings For Writers That Signed Letter Condemning Trans Coverage)

A Times spokesperson said an “employee was recognized in public” and “the person said something about ‘attempts to eliminate trans people’ and then spat on the employee.”

A group of more than 200 NYT journalists and contributors published an open letter in February criticizing the outlet’s decision to run articles that criticized sex-change treatments and procedures for children. The letter argued the Times displayed “poor editorial judgment” and aligned itself with “hate groups” as the publication allegedly continues “demonizing queers through the ostensible reporting of science.”

The letter cited Emily Bazelon’s “The Battle Over Gender Therapy” and Katie Baker’s “When Students Change Gender Identity and Parents Don’t Know.”