‘Inappropriate Message’ Sacks BuzzFeed’s Adrian Carrasquillo

  • Reporter Was on List of ‘S–tty Media Men’
  • Atlanta Anchor Davis Dies After Massive Stroke
  • Detroit Anchor Malcom Maddox Returns, Cleared of Charges
  • Services Saturday for Photog Don Hogan Charles
  • Disgraced Ex-Reporter Gets 5 Years in Bomb Threats
  • Elizabeth Vargas Leaving ABC News in May
  • Obama More Admired Than Trump, Gallup Finds
  • Evidence Ties Segregation, Black Maternal Deaths
  • China Paper Seeks to Influence Chinese-Americans
  • Thousands Respond to Series on Boston Racism
  • Short Takes
Adrian Carrasquillo

Adrian Carrasquillo, who became White House reporter for BuzzFeed News a year ago after reporting on politics with an emphasis on Latino issues, was fired Wednesday after an internal investigation, Kate Feldman reported for the Daily News in New York.

Carrasquillo, who was named on the ‘S—tty Media Men’ list that circulated online last month, was let go following a new complaint of inappropriate comments to a co-worker,” Feldman wrote.

“ ‘In responding to a complaint filed last week by an employee, we learned that Adrian violated our Code of Conduct by sending an inappropriate message to a colleague. This followed a recent reminder about our prohibition against inappropriate communications,’ a spokesperson told the Daily News.

“ ‘We are saddened by these circumstances, but we take these issues extremely seriously. We’re committed to ensuring that BuzzFeed remains a place where everyone is treated respectfully by his or her peers.’ . . . .”


Maxwell Tani wrote Wednesday for Business Insider, “The existence of the list, which was circulated following revelations of decades-long harassment by Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, was reported by BuzzFeed, and included anonymous allegations of verbal, physical, and sexual abuse that the list’s author advised should be taken ‘with a grain of salt.’

“The list helped spark a conversation about harassment in digital media that has led to the departure of staffers at several new-media outlets. . . .”


Lara Takenaga, New York Times: Readers React to Glenn Thrush’s Punishment; We Respond



Atlanta Anchor Davis Dies After Massive Stroke

In Atlanta, “CBS 46 morning news anchor Amanda Davis has passed away after suffering a massive spontaneous stroke,” WGCL-TV reported Wednesday. She was 62.


“Amanda was at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport on Tuesday when she rushed to the hospital and underwent treatment. . . .”

Under the headline “Amanda Davis’ Family: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know,” Jessica McBride reported Thursday for heavy.com, “Tragically, Amanda Davis was traveling to a funeral for her beloved father when she herself was stricken and died. . . . Davis was at the airport because she was “headed to San Antonio following the death of her father, when the medical episode happened,” according to 9News.


Davis also leaves a daughter, writer Melora Rivera. “In 2014, Melora was the subject of headlines around the world when she narrowly escaped an intruder who had broken into her home. ‘A Los Angeles woman fled onto her roof when a transient broke into her home Wednesday and terrifying photos have revealed how close the intruder came to finding her,’ reported UK Daily Mail,” McBride wrote.

Rodney Ho wrote for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “ ‘The CBS46 news team is in shock,’ said Steve Doerr, news director. ‘No one saw this coming.’


“During the 11 p.m. CBS46 newscast, anchor Sharon Reed said she had nothing but respect for her, lauding her authenticity. And she marveled over the three-part series Davis did in 2016 about her alcoholism. ‘She shared so much of herself, her vulnerability, on multiple nights,’ Reed said. ‘Hats off. We’re going to miss her.’ She teared up on air. . . .

“ ‘I’m glad she was able to make the comeback she did,’ said former 11Alive anchor Brenda Wood. ‘She will be remembered for that, for having the strength to persevere and overcome.’


“. . . Talk show host Rashan Richey, who was friends with her, said he plans a three-hour tribute to her on his 1380/WAOK-AM show from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday.

Ho also wrote, “Davis was off air for more than three years when CBS46 gave her another shot a year ago to anchor again. . . . . After arrests for driving under the influence, Davis did a three-part series last year revealing her alcoholism for the first time and her road to recovery.”


She “worked at WAGA-TV for 26 years starting at 1986 when it was first a CBS affiliate, then a Fox affiliate. She helped launch ‘Good Day Atlanta’ as a host in 1992 before going to evenings. . . .”

Malcom Maddox

Detroit Anchor Malcom Maddox Returns, Cleared of Charges

Malcom Maddox returned to the anchor chair for WXYZ-TV (Channel 7) Friday morning, three weeks after accusations of inappropriate behavior made by a Detroit pastor took him off the air,” the Detroit Free Press reported.


“WXYZ announced it plans to take no action against Maddox and another employee mentioned in a Dec. 6 news conference held by the Rev. W.J. Rideout III, pastor of Our God’s People Church in Detroit.

“The station’s parent company, E.W. Scripps Company, reached this conclusion after conducting an investigation into allegations against Maddox, anchor Stephen Clark and General Manager Mike Murri, whom Rideout accused of brushing off inappropriate behavior. . . .”


David A. Graham, the Atlantic: The Clarence Thomas Exception (Dec. 20)

Services Saturday for Photog Don Hogan Charles

Services for Don Hogan Charles, the first black staff photographer at the New York Times, are scheduled for Saturday at Benta’s Funeral Home, 630 St. Nicholas Ave. at 143rd Street in New York.


Viewing begins at 11 a.m. and the service at 4 p.m., the funeral home confirmed. Charles is listed there under his given name of Daniel Charles.

A Times obituary by Niraj Chokshi published Monday said Charles died on Dec. 15 in the East Harlem section of New York. He was 79.


Charles was best known for photographs of Harlem and for his iconic photo of Malcolm X holding a rifle at the window of his home, which appeared in the September 1964 issue of Ebony magazine.

Disgraced Ex-Reporter Gets 5 Years in Bomb Threats

Juan Thompson (BRIC-TV)

A former journalist who admitted to calling in bomb threats to U.S. Jewish centers as part of an extensive campaign of cyber stalking his ex-girlfriend was sentenced to five years in prison” on Dec. 20, Brendan Pierson reported that day for Reuters.

“U.S. District Judge Kevin Castel in Manhattan sentenced Juan Thompson after hearing a statement from Francesca Rossi, which the judge called ‘perhaps one of the most eloquent presentations I’ve heard in this courtroom.’


“He noted that he was exceeding federal sentencing guidelines, something he rarely did, but said ‘the level of intensity, the maliciousness’ of Thompson’s conduct warranted it.

“Thompson’s lawyer, Mark Gombiner, said in court that he would file an appeal. He had argued earlier that while Thompson deserved punishment, Castel should consider that Thompson had a difficult upbringing and suffered from depression, anxiety and had a history of severe alcohol abuse.


“Before being sentenced, Thompson, 32, apologized in court to the people he had hurt.

“ ‘I don’t seek absolution, but I do seek forgiveness when it is forthcoming,’ he said.


“Rossi, wearing a shirt with the words ‘believe women,’ then addressed the court.” ‘I stand in front of you grateful to be alive,’ she said. ‘Men like Juan Thompson usually end up murdering their victims.’ . . .”

At the time of Thompson’s arrest in March, “NBC Nightly News” led with the story, and ABC’s “World News Tonight” included it in its first block.


Doyle Murphy reported then for the Riverfront Times in Thompson’s St. Louis hometown, “Thompson, 31, was once a reporter for The Intercept, but he was fired after the New York City-based news site found he had been making up sources. Our investigation turned up even more journalistic problems dating back to his college days at Vassar in Poughkeepsie, New York. . . .”

Elizabeth Vargas Leaving ABC News in May

Elizabeth Vargas

Elizabeth Vargas, the longtime co-host of ABC’s ‘20/20,’ is leaving the network,” Debra Birnbaum reported Friday for Variety.

“The announcement was made Friday by James Goldston, the president of ABC News, in a memo to staff. Goldston said Vargas, who will be exiting the network in May, is pursuing ‘new ventures.’


“There was no word yet from ABC News about a successor.

“Vargas has been with ‘20/20' for 14 years. She’s worked alongside ‘World News Tonight’ anchor David Muir on the newsmagazine since 2013.


“ ‘We were most proud of her courage and grace in telling her own story about her struggle with anxiety and alcoholism,’ wrote Goldston. ‘Her best-selling memoir has helped so many people by raising awareness about the importance of finding treatment for millions who are still struggling. She continues to be an inspiration for us all.’

“Vargas circulated a memo of her own, saying she’d hoped to make the announcement after Jan. 1. ‘I am sorry only to have to share this news with you as we celebrate the holidays,’ she wrote. ‘It has been a profound privilege to be the anchor of “20/20" for 14 years, and a true honor to work with each and every one of you.’ . . .”

Melania and Donald Trump with Barack and Michelle Obama at Trump’s inauguration last January (Pool photo)

Obama More Admired Than Trump, Gallup Finds

Americans once again are most likely to name Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton as the man and woman living anywhere in the world they admire most, as they have for the past 10 years,” Jeffrey M. Jones reported Wednesday for the Gallup Organization. “The pair retain their titles this year, although by much narrower margins than in the past. Obama edges out Donald Trump, 17% to 14%, while Clinton edges out Michelle Obama, 9% to 7%.”


Jones also reported, “As would be expected for a Republican president, Trump wins handily among Republicans — 35% name him as the man they admire most, with only 1% naming Obama. In contrast, Obama leads among Democrats, with 39% mentioning him and 3% Trump. Independents are slightly more likely to name Obama (12%) than Trump (9%). . . .”

Evidence Ties Segregation, Black Maternal Deaths

It’s been long-established that black women . . . fare worse in pregnancy and childbirth, dying at a rate more than triple that of white mothers,” Annie Waldman reported Wednesday for ProPublica. “And while part of the disparity can be attributed to factors like poverty and inadequate access to health care, there is growing evidence that points to the quality of care at hospitals where a disproportionate number of black women deliver, which are often in neighborhoods disadvantaged by segregation.


“Researchers have found that women who deliver at these so-called ‘black-serving’ hospitals are more likely to have serious complications — from infections to birth-related embolisms to emergency hysterectomies — than mothers who deliver at institutions that serve fewer black women.”Still, it’s difficult to tell from studies alone how this pattern plays out in real life. The hospitals are never named. The women behind the numbers are faceless, the specific ways their hospitals may have failed them unknown.

“ProPublica did its own analysis, using two years of hospital inpatient discharge data from New York, Illinois and Florida to look in-depth at how well different facilities treat women who experience one particular problem — hemorrhages — while giving birth.


“We, too, found the same broad pattern identified in previous studies — that women who hemorrhage at disproportionately black-serving hospitals are far more likely to wind up with severe complications, from hysterectomies, which are more directly related to hemorrhage, to pulmonary embolisms, which can be indirectly related. When we looked at data for only the most healthy women, and for white women at black-serving hospitals, the pattern persisted.

“Beyond this bird’s-eye view, our analysis allowed us to identify individual hospitals with higher complication rates, to look at what kinds of protocols they have and to examine what went wrong in specific cases. . . .”


Waldman quoted Dr. Deborah Kaplan, assistant commissioner for maternal, infant and reproductive health at the New York City Health Department.

“ ‘We are data driven and we look to where the outcomes are the worst,’ Kaplan said. . . .


“ ‘We used to say we are not sure why we are seeing these racial disparities. Now we say unequivocally that racism causes these problems,’ said Kaplan. She emphasized that this encompassed not only health care but all aspects of life in the city, from housing to schools. ‘If we provide equally to everyone, we could widen the inequity. We have to prioritize putting resources in neighborhoods with the highest rates of severe maternal morbidity and the least access.’ . . .”

Courtesy China Press via Foreign Policy

China Paper Seeks to Influence Chinese-Americans

During China’s 19th Party Congress, held in Beijing from Oct. 18 to 24, the country’s state-controlled domestic media dutifully gave the dry, jargon-filled proceedings wall-to-wall front-page coverage,” Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian reported Dec. 21 for Foreign Policy. “Beneath headlines trumpeting the party’s accomplishments, countless photographs showed Chinese President Xi Jinping presiding over long tables in cavernous meeting halls.


“If you’d have opened Qiao Bao during this period, you’d have found much the same thing. Each day during the congress, which China holds every five years, the Chinese-language newspaper’s top story featured the conference and an accompanying photo, often of Xi.

“What made that coverage somewhat surprising — especially given how opaque, and frankly tedious, the congresses tend to be — is where Qiao Bao is based: Alhambra, California.


“The American daily serves up mostly Beijing-friendly news to more than 100,000 Chinese readers in at least 15 major cities in the United States, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Houston, Boston, and Washington.

“The enthusiastic coverage of official Beijing is no accident. In recent years, and especially since Xi became president in 2012, the Chinese government has sought various ways to increase its influence over China’s 40 million-strong diaspora. . . .”

Fans watch as the Boston Red Sox play the New York Yankees at Fenway Park in Boston in July. (Keith Bedford/Boston Globe)

Thousands Respond to Series on Boston Racism

Revive a radio station aimed at people in Boston’s black community to give them added voice, and perhaps power, in the city,” Nicole Dungca reported Wednesday in the Boston Globe. “Give the City Council greater authority to influence development projects. Create more social events for people of different backgrounds to get to know each other — and talk things through if the conversation takes a bad turn.


“ ‘The suggestion to speak up and challenge racist comments is especially meaningful to me,’ said a reader who regretted remaining silent recently after hearing a racially offensive comment about a black-owned barbecue restaurant. ‘If you hear something, or see something, say something.’

“These are just some of the ideas that poured into the Globe’s e-mail box, comment board, and Facebook group, heeding a call for possible solutions to problems raised in the Spotlight Team’s seven-part series on race, which concluded Dec. 16.


“By the thousands, readers reacted to the weeklong series of articles, which examined whether Boston’s enduring reputation as a place unwelcoming to black people is deserved. Some 1,600 readers posted comments on a moderated comment board, about 3,000 people have joined a special Facebook group for the series, called ‘Discussing Race in Boston,’ and hundreds wrote to race@globe.com, an e-mail address set up for feedback. . . .”

Los Angeles Times magazine celebrated women’s contributions to this year’s films. See first item below.

Short Takes

Isis Romero, Phil Anaya and their newborn. (Courtesy Isis Romero)

Share This Story

Get our newsletter