A veteran California broadcast journalist has resigned after writing a 400-word Facebook post last month defending then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh from sexual assault allegations.
Kris Long had been off the air at CBS affiliate KESQ-TV in Palm Springs since the Sept. 17 post appeared, the Desert Sun reported.
On Friday he offered his resignation.
“I want to thank those who have offered support and apologize again for any I may have offended,” Long said in a written statement. “I hope to return to the news business in the future.”
“I want to thank those who have offered support and apologize again for any I may have offended. I hope to return to the news business in the future.”
Jerry Upham, general manager for the Gulf California Broadcast Company, said the station accepted Long’s resignation and that he “has a following and we know he will be missed by many in the area.”
Christine Blasey Ford came forward in September with an allegation that Kavanaugh tried to sexually assault her at a party in high school. They both both testified in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee on the matter last month and the FBI conducted a limited investigation.
The Senate narrowly confirmed Kavanaugh onto the court Saturday amid protests and almost universal opposition from Democrats.
In his post, Long wrote that “few things are more serious than rape” but the timing of Ford’s claim “stinks of political maneuvering.”
He also said that the #MeToo movement was long overdue but that the allegation against Kavanauagh amounted to “lesser miscreant behavior.”
“You are beyond dreaming if you think 17 year old boys are not going to misbehave from time to time as they begin to attempt relationships with the opposite sex,” Long wrote. “That is just the way we animals are made!”
“You are beyond dreaming if you think 17 year old boys are not going to misbehave from time to time as they begin to attempt relationships with the opposite sex. That is just the way we animals are made!”
The post drew 160 comments from some supporting him and rebuke from others who expressed disappointment.
Some readers contacted the news station calling for him to retire. Others criticized the station for taking Long off the air.
Long initially stood by his remarks but eventually deleted the post the next day and issued an apology.
“I wish I hadn’t a written (the post) because it’s caused me a lot of headache, he said. “This is a sensitive and controversial subject and I apologize for any offense that this has caused,” he wrote.
In hindsight, Long said he may have crossed an ethical line by publishing his views on social media.
“Perhaps I may have broken our social media standards by putting my article a little bit too far to one side,” he said the day after his posting.
The Society For Professional Journalists, the nation’s oldest and largest professional journalism association, urges journalists to avoid activities that “may compromise integrity or impartiality, or may damage credibility."
Long’s resignation comes as a reporter for an NBC affiliate in Minnesota was fired after wearing a “Make America Great Again" cap while covering President Trump’s rally in that state.