Yesterday, HuffPost fired a recently hired, Los Angeles-based social media editor after her managers were alerted to the fact that an Instagram account belonging to the new hire was spewing racist rants online. Using a now-deleted Instagram account, Ashley Rose, who was hired earlier this month, targeted a number of people with the sort of racist invective you’d expect to find in the darkest 4chan threads.
“Y’all wonder why we stereotype and shoot your ignorant asses,” one post said. “You wanted a race battle in this country, you got it! But in the end remember who makes the money in this country.”
“Let’s play who will be the next Trevon [sic],” another said.
“We don’t wear Jordan’s [sic] or Nike in this house because Nike sucks politically, and his father actually fought for this country’s freedom instead of sit in a jail cell,” read another.
Others read: “COONS,” “PORCH MONKEY,” and “NIGGER.” She included a hashtag: “#MAGA.”
I spoke to the woman who runs the Instagram account that Rose targeted. She said it started because she wrote in a post about supporting black-owned businesses. In response, Rose wrote that she would only support white businesses, and from there it escalated.
The woman targeted by Rose, who requested anonymity because she doesn’t want any more negativity on her page or public attention, said she was taken aback by the vitriol and the way Rose talked about her child.
“When [Rose] first posted, I knew the word ‘nigger’ was coming next,” she said. “It usually does with that.”
Several of her followers emailed HuffPost about Rose’s behavior. Deadspin reviewed two responses from the company. One, from the HuffPost Corrections email account, sent this morning, said:
Thanks for bringing this to our attention. HuffPost does not tolerate discrimination in any form. The person in question was engaged for only a short time in a limited contractor capacity and no longer is a contractor.
A different email from the same account, sent yesterday morning, said:
Hello [redacted], Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Ms. Rose is not a HuffPost employee and is no longer working with us in any capacity.
Neither were signed.
On Ashley Rose’s public Facebook page she posted two photos from the HuffPost office, dated Feb. 6.
A HuffPost employee said numerous staffers are wondering who greenlit the hire and how much Mike Barry, HuffPo’s director of audience, was involved in the process, if at all. This person also noted there was general sense of relief that Rose was fired swiftly. I emailed HuffPost EIC Lydia Polgreen and Barry for comment about Rose’s hiring and firing. They did not respond to multiple requests for comment.