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Here's the Tweet That Got a USA Today Editor Demoted

AP Photo/Steven Senne

David Mastio was a deputy editorial page editor at USA Today. He’s not a conservative, though he’s not afraid of opposing views. He’s no longer with the publication. He was demoted for a tweet that set off an internal witch hunt of his past writings in the hopes that they could terminate him through a three-strikes policy. What he tweeted wasn’t even that bad. It wasn’t directed at conservatives. It wasn’t anti-Trump. It was pro-science, and it angered his woke newsroom enough to cause a fracas. Mastio added that Gannett has purged most if not all its conservative writers from its staff. The lack of diversity is explicit. Mastio knows this is true given the internal memos that were distributed among the top editors. The lack of viewpoints also extends into the cartoon section of all places. Gary Varvel was the last man standing. He’s gone now. So, how did Mastio become a target of the ‘woke’ mob from within USA Today? Oh, he tweeted that only women could get pregnant. I know, really offensive stuff there…if you’re a deranged leftist. He elaborated more on Twitter and in an op-ed for The New York Post:


I know something about Gannett’s evolution since I was USA Today’s deputy editorial page editor until August, when I was demoted after I tweeted, “People who are pregnant are also women.” 

That idea was forbidden because a “news reporter” covering diversity, equity and inclusion wrote a story detailing how transgender men can get pregnant. I compounded my sin against this new orthodoxy by calling the idea that men can get pregnant an “opinion.” 

If I wanted to keep any job at USA Today, my bosses informed me, I needed to delete these offensive tweets because they were causing pain to the LGBTQ activists and journalists on our staff.


…the LGBTQ Employee Resource Group and the newsroom “diversity” committee thought I should be fired. That makes me worry. No, I don’t worry for me. I’ll be fine. I am a cis hetero white male with all the privilege that goes with it, as I have learned in my Gannett-mandated diversity training. To even complain on my behalf would be a microaggression, as I also learned in Gannett training.


Gannett’s top editors and publishers are filling the company with a cadre of young college graduates who share a narrow “woke” ideology that is alien to the values of most of its readers. In a closely divided America, Gannett has a grand total of one local conservative staff columnist. There’s one conservative editorial page left in the network. In recent years, I’ve watched good conservative editorial pages in Cincinnati, Indianapolis and Oklahoma City wink out to be replaced with bland corporate liberalism. There are zero conservative editorial cartoonists left in the network.


I don’t know what’s going on in the news or sports departments across the network, but I do know what’s going on in opinion sections. Until August, I read a daily memo of the national opinion produced across the network, and most days there’s nothing by a conservative staffer at a local paper. From time to time there’s one from a freelancer or one of the then-three right-leaning staffers in USA Today’s opinion section. (Now two.)

I do know that at USA Today, members of the newsroom “diversity” committee are allowed to edit “problematic” opinion content. Members of this intolerant “diversity” committee root around in unpublished articles and try to spike those that run afoul of their agenda. The few controversial conservative columns that make it through the gauntlet must be matched with content more amenable to the diversity ideology. Staffers in regional design centers — the people who lay out the papers — have the ability to kill conservative columns that local opinion editors select.

If woke news department staffers have anything like the influence in news that they have in opinion, half our potential subscribers have no chance of seeing their views fairly represented.


Yeah, that’s not good but also not shocking. USA Today should focus on whether the stories their ‘woke’ news crew is publishing is even true after the Gabriela Miranda fiasco. He elaborated further that the diversity committee which like the rest of these bodies acts more like the French Directory got into a nasty screaming match with the paper’s front office over what to do with Mastio who faced a demotion and a $30,000 pay cut due to his scientifically accurate tweet. Now, Mastio has written things like declaring Republicans are a greater threat than 9/11. Look, he’s an opinion writer. I’m sure there are hordes of liberals who hate what we at Townhall publish—and they do. I know some might say ‘you reap what you sow’ here, but frankly, if we’re going to truly defeat ‘wokeism,’ we should defend classical liberals on these matters whenever possible. These folks are the ones who will be on the frontlines witnessing this madness in industries and newsrooms where conservatives will never take over fully—it’s key to support who’s left there. 


Sure, they will write things that attack us. It may be outlandish, but they also understand what free speech means which is a rapidly declining quality for those on the other side of the aisle. And it’s also a stand for reason and facts here. Mastio was attacked because he stated correctly that men cannot get pregnant. He was torched for it. Mastio can say that my political party, which is giving me serious heartburn lately, is a national security threat. He’s not the first to say that by the way. 

That’s his opinion. What isn’t an 'opinion' is what he got raked over the coals for, which is citing simple biology. This is fighting for what’s real--what are facts. Where this is all heading concerning the woke agenda is a battle between sentient beings and the lizard people. We’re going to need all the help we can get. 

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