New York Times caves to its own protesters, apologizes for running Tom Cotton Op-Ed

After a full day of backlash for the decision to run an opinion editorial piece by a sitting U.S. senator, the New York Times has apologized to its staff and readers

Published: June 5, 2020 7:49am

Updated: June 5, 2020 8:32am

The New York Times is now apologizing for running an op-ed by Republican Sen. Tom Cotton that argued for the use of the U.S. military to quell the violent protests and riots that have disrupted American cities for the past 10 days.

The paper issued the apology Thursday for running the opinion essay by the Arkansas senator and military veteran – titled "Send in the Troops" – one day after it was published.

The newspaper's leadership faced immediate backlash from its staff, dozens of whom took to social media to write, "Running this puts Black @NYTimes staff in danger." 

Initially, editorial page editor James Bennet, attempted to defend the decision to run Cotton's piece.

"Times Opinion owes it to our readers to show them counter-arguments, particularly those made by people in a position to set policy," wrote Bennet. 

But that explanation proved insufficient, causing Times journalists and staffers from all areas of the paper to criticize the editorial decision. The group of dissenters quickly labeled the article's position "fascist." And on Thursday, the revolters, who were publicly excoriating their employer, forced a meeting to discuss the decision to run the op-ed.

The apology, which was shared by a New York Times media reporter, claimed that a "rushed editorial process led to the publication of an Op-Ed that did not meet our standards." 

Since publishing the piece, the Times has run a number of additional articles and opinion articles addressing the newspaper's decision

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