Tricia Macke (Photo: WXIX)
An anchor for Fox affiliate WXIX-TV in Cincinnati is apologizing after calling MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow an "angry young man" on her Facebook page.
The comment happened roughly one month ago, just after the debate between Vice President Joe Biden and Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan.
For those who don't recall, Biden was particularly aggressive that night, either interrupting or making a wide array of faces at Ryan the majority of the night. Rachel Maddow weighed in after the event, however, and said Biden "clearly won" and had a "great night."
Here is what Fox19/WXIX anchor Tricia Macke's Facebook looked like shortly thereafter, via The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD):
(Photo: Facebook via GLAAD)
Commenters appeared to pounce on the statement almost immediately, writing things like "You're showing your Fox!" (a reference to the perception that the national network is right-leaning), or asking whether Macke would start with "Jewish jokes, black jokes, [or] fat jokes" next?
After about four comments, Macke apologized and admitted that she should have said Maddow is "antagonistic," but soon after wrote: "I knew what I was saying..."
The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) released a statement on November 9 adding:
Referring to Maddow as a "man" because she is a gay woman is completely unacceptable for someone in the business of journalism.
Cincinnati viewers rely on Macke and Fox 19 to deliver unbiased and fair reporting about the lives of LGBT people in their community. But this is someone who attempted to insult a gay woman by questioning her gender, then stated very clearly that she did so with complete awareness of her actions.
"Macke owes an apology not only to viewers, but to young people in Ohio who are subjected to unfair bullying and harassment like this on a daily basis," said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick.
Tricia Macke undoubtedly tried to insult Maddow because of their political differences, rather than simply because Maddow is gay - but her comments went much further than insulting Maddow's political leanings, and took issue with Maddow's gender, revealing an anti-gay (or at least anti-gender-nonconforming?) bias underlying her political beliefs. [Emphasis added]
Macke has worked with WXIX since 1993, her biography says, and while her job does not appear to be at risk at the present time, Macke has since written public apologies on both her Facebook page and that of her employer:
I recently posted comments on my personal Facebook page regarding cable news anchor Rachel Maddow which were insensitive and inappropriate. I apologize to Ms. Maddow and any others who may have been offended by my comments, as they do not reflect my firm beliefs in individual and equal rights, and they certainly do not represent the opinions or position of my employer WXIX-TV.
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