The New Republic, an American magazine of commentary on politics and the arts, has retracted a vile and homophobic op-ed about Democratic Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg. The piece was written by Dale Peck, a literary critic who is openly gay.
On Friday the magazine published the op-ed called “My Mayor Pete Problem,” on its website.
In his piece, Peck described Buttigieg as “the gay equivalent of Uncle Tom,” and he referred to the presidential candidate as “Mary Pete” throughout the column.
Peck argued that because Buttigieg did not come out as gay until he was in his 30s that he would be too occupied with sex and drugs to be an effective president. Peck even sunk as low as speculating about intimate details of Buttigieg’s personal life.
Mere moments after it was published online social media exploded with condemnation.
Hours after it was made public the op-ed was removed from the website and replaced by a note from the editor. The note read “Dale Peck’s post ‘My Mayor Pete Problem’ has been removed from the site, in response to criticism of the piece’s inappropriate and invasive content. We regret its publication.”
Chris Lehmann, the New Republic’s editor, added a separate statement, “The New Republic recognizes that this post crossed a line, and while it was largely intended as satire, it was inappropriate and invasive.”
On Saturday, Win McCormack issued an official apology for the article. “Yesterday The New Republic’s website published an opinion piece about Mayor Pete Buttigieg that should not have appeared there. As The New Republic’s owner, I want to extend our sincerest apologies to Mayor Buttigieg, as well as to our readers, for an article that was both inappropriate and offensive. It has been removed from our site,” he said in a statement.
He continued, “We have high standards at The New Republic, but sometimes we fall short. Yesterday we made a mistake, but we remain committed to honoring the tradition of high standards and journalistic integrity that have been the hallmark of The New Republic for more than 100 years. Please know that moving forward, we will do everything we can to prove that commitment to our readers and to the public.”
On Saturday the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) announced that it had pulled out of a climate forum hosted by The New Republic after the outlet posted the op-ed.
“The offensive piece by this author, and the choice to run it, are inconsistent with our values and LCV is withdrawing our participation in the presidential primary candidate climate forum previously announced in New York City on September 23,” said LCV President Gene Karpinski.
“We will remain focused on the important work of elevating the climate crisis in this election and encouraging all the candidates to be prioritizing solutions,” Karpinski added.
The campaign office for Pete Buttigieg has not yet responded to the controversy.