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HLN host reads insulting email sent by Aziz Ansari 'bad date' reporter

Entertainment Weekly logo Entertainment Weekly 1/17/2018 James Hibberd
a woman holding a sign © HLN

Okay, so here’s the latest.

You remember on Monday when HLN’s Ashleigh Banfield utterly slammed the anonymous writer who detailed Aziz Ansari’s date behavior that was either aggressively inappropriate or run-of-the-mill awkward, depending on who you ask?

It seems the reporter of the original story (Katie Way from a site called babe.net) sent Banfield an email. And it’s a doozy. 

“The reporter that wielded those powerful words sent some choice words my way,” Banfield introduces in a clip from Wednesday’s telecast (watch it below). “I want to share this because I think this gives some insight into the caliber of the person who wielded that nuclear weapon at Aziz Ansari’s career. The caliber of this 22-year-old young women … I assume she fashions herself a feminist in this movement.” 

Banfield reads: “‘Ashleigh — someone I assume no one under the age of 45 has ever heard of — I hope the 500 retweets on the single news write-up made that burgundy lipstick, bad highlights, second wave-feminist has-been really relevant for a little while…'”

Apparently, this is only a “slight part” of the email.

Banfield concludes angrily: “If you truly believe in feminism, the last thing you should do is attack someone in an ad hominem way for her age — I’m 50 — for my highlights — I was brown-haired for a while when I was a war correspondent interviewing Yasser Arafat and in Afganistan, Iraq, Gaza, and the West Bank — Google those places. That’s not the way we have those conversations as women or as men. We don’t attack — as journalists — we do not attack for people for their age, or their highlights, or their lipstick. It is the most hypocritical thing a woman who says she supports the woman’s movement could ever do.”

Previously, Banfield slammed the anonymous writer of the original piece: “Dear Grace (not your real name),” she began, using the woman’s pseudonym. “I’m sorry that you had a bad date. I have had a few myself. They stink.” She later added, “But let’s take a moment to reflect on what you claim was the ‘worst night of your life…’”


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