The Huffington Post’s South African edition has removed a story because the author, Shelley Garland, “appears not to exist.” The situation has resulted in changes to the site’s policies regarding bloggers.
The piece was titled “Could It Be Time To Deny White Men The Franchise?” and makes the argument that “if white men no longer had the vote, the progressive cause would be strengthened.” The article is no longer on the website; it was initially published on April 13.
“We have done this because the blog submission from an individual who called herself Shelley Garland, who claimed to be an MA student at UCT, cannot be traced and appears not to exist,” the Huffington Post explained.
The site continued: “We have immediately bolstered and strengthened our blogging procedures that, until now, have operated on the basis of open communication and good faith. From now on, bloggers will have to verify themselves.”
“It would not be necessary to deny white men indefinitely – the denial of the vote to white men for 20 years (just less than a generation) would go some way to seeing a decline in the influence of reactionary and neo-liberal ideology in the world,” the now-removed post read. “The influence of reckless white males were one of the primary reasons that led to the Great Recession which began in 2008. This would also strike a blow against toxic white masculinity, one that is long needed.”
The Huffington Post’s statement concludes, “We apologize for the oversight.”