Gay Times editor Josh Rivers under fire for offensive tweets
The newly appointed editor of Gay Times has been suspended for offensive tweets
The tweets, which were published between 2010 and 2015, include racist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic, transphobic, lesbophobic, sizeist, ableist, classist and ageist comments. He also made derogatory comments about the homeless and “ugly” people.
Rivers was in conversation with BuzzFeed about his vision for Gay Times and how this could be used to promote diversity when he was challenged on his historic tweets.
Rivers was clearly shocked to be called out, saying, “Wow. This is really hard to hear. I’m kind of stunned. I think it shows an immaturity, a certain amount of self-loathing”, adding that the tweets demonstrated that he had “grown”.
It was only last month that Rivers was announced as the new editor of Gay Times. Many were excited and hopeful about his appointment, seeing it as a departure from the white-owned and run gay media - despite the fact that DIVA publisher Linda Riley is mixed race, as is Sarah Garrett, who published g3.
Following the publication of the BuzzFeed article, Rivers has posted an apology on his Twitter page:
“To every single person who is hurt, offended and disappointed: I’m sorry. The tweets are horrible. They are abhorrent. They are ugly. They are so hateful.”
“These tweets from my past show a deep self-loathing that I’ve worked hard to overcome. I have long taken steps to address the issues that prevented me from treating people with the respect and kindness I value so dearly now. It is because of my past and my own awakening that I’ve since pivoted everything in my life towards supporting and empowering our community. It is upsetting that the damage I caused before has now resurfaced to cause more pain.”
“I hope we can use this as an opportunity for growth, for healing, for moving forward. As evidenced by my own example, there is so much work to do.”
To every single person who is hurt, offended and disappointed: I’m sorry. pic.twitter.com/XAwz7llKxc— Josh Rivers (@_joshrivers) 15 November 2017
DIVA editor Carrie Lyell, who was due to be presenting an award at the Gay Times Honours on Saturday, said:
“In light of the Buzzfeed story today regarding offensive tweets made by Gay Times editor Josh Rivers, myself and DIVA publisher Linda Riley will no longer be attending the Gay Times Honours at the National Portrait Gallery.
“Given the racist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic, transphobic, lesbophobic, sizeist, ablest, classist and ageist nature of his tweets, it would be wholly inappropriate for me, and for DIVA, to share a stage with Rivers.
“DIVA and Gay Times have a long-standing friendship and we want this to continue, but it wouldn’t be right for us to attend under these circumstances.”
Gay Times Tweeted the following statement in the last hour:
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