Media Blog

L’affaire Cheerios: MSNBC Fired the Wrong Person

Andrew Johnson posted over in the Corner that MSNBC has fired the staffer responsible for the offensive Cheerios tweet from last night. That tweet has since been deleted, but here’s a screenshot I took with my phone:

Yes, it’s offensive, but why’d they fire the staffer over it? I looked at the @MSNBC Twitter feed last night and there were no other offensive tweets that jumped out at me.

Richard Wolffe, the executive editor of, tweeted last night, “The Cheerios tweet from @msnbc was dumb, offensive and we’ve taken it down. That’s not who we are at msnbc.”

Wrong, wrong, wrong. That tweet is EXACTLY what MSNBC is all about.

Just look at MSNBC’s recent history. It’s impossible for Wolffe to claim “that’s not who we are at MSNBC” when you have Martin Bashir suggesting Sarah Palin be used as a toilet, Alec Baldwin throwing anti-gay temper-tantrums, and most recently, Melissa Harris-Perry and her guests mocking Mitt Romney for his adopted black grandchild. Yes, discipline was dished out in these examples and apologies were made, but at what point does MSNBC not get that their problem lies with its management and most certainly not with some low-level staffer who was told to send out edgy tweets. That staffer was just copying the stuff heard on MSNBC every single day. 

I say let the staffer apologize and move on. And then fire everyone in management at MSNBC. They’re the real reason incidents like this keep happening. 


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