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Atlantic Editor Defends Writer Who Said Women That Get Abortions Should Be Hanged

Jeffrey Goldberg, editor of The Atlantic magazine, is defending his decision to hire a conservative writer who once advocated hanging women who get abortions in a tweet, Slate reported.

The magazine’s hiring of Kevin Williamson, formerly a writer for the National Review, raised eyebrows when it was revealed last week. Williamson is a fierce anti-Trump conservative, but has been criticized for making racially insensitive comments.

Goldberg, who used to work for the Forward, defended Williamson’s tendency to post offensive tweets in a memo sent to Atlantic staff. (Williamson no longer has a Twitter account.)

“I don’t think that taking a person’s worst tweets, or assertions, in isolation is the best journalistic practice,” Goldberg wrote. “I have read most, or much, of what he has written; some of his critics have not done the same. I would also prefer, all things being equal, to give people second chances and the opportunity to change.”

On Twitter, Goldberg’s statements were roundly criticized.

Goldberg defended Williamson by saying he speaks for a marginalized community.

“I happen to think that conservatives made ideologically homeless by the rise of Trump are some of the most interesting people in America, and I want to read them whenever I can,” Goldberg said.

Contact Ari Feldman at [email protected] or on Twitter @aefeldman


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