New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet called an associate professor at the USC Annenberg School an “asshole” on Facebook today after the professor took a shot at Baquet for not running Charlie Hebdo’s Muhammed cartoons.
“Dear Marc,” Baquet wrote to USC’s Marc Cooper, “appreciate the self righteous second guessing without even considering there might be another point of view. Hope your students are more open minded. Asshole.”
Reached via email, Baquet told POLITICO: “Lots of people have disagreed with my decision. Some of them are in The Times. I get that. Mr Cooper’s comment was nasty and arrogant. So I told him what I thought.”
Baquet’s decision to forego running the cartoons that provoked terrorists to raid the offices of Charlie Hebdo, killing 12, have been heavily scrutinized. On Thursday, Baquet said he made his decision primarily because he did not want to insult the paper’s Muslim readers.
“We have a standard that is pretty simple. We don’t run things that are designed to gratuitously offend,” Baquet told POLITICO at the time. “[O]bviously [I] don’t expect all to agree. But let’s not forget the Muslim family in Brooklyn who read us and is offended by any depiction of what he sees as his prophet. I don’t give a damn about the head of ISIS but I do care about that family and it is arrogant to ignore them.”