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Washington Post’s Feminist Journalist Who Posted Kobe Bryant Rape Case After His Death Suspended



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After news that basketball legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter were killed in a helicopter crash started making rounds on social media yesterevening, a small group of self declared feminists including Shailja Patel, an exiled Kenyan poet, tweeted a link to a years-old story about the Kobe Bryant rape case.

Such was the case for Felicia Sonmez who covers national politics for the Washington Post, the journalist who took to Twitter shortly after the world learned of Bryant’s death along with others aboard his private helicopter which crashed outside of Los Angeles and posted a link to an April 2016 story from the news site The Daily Beast which carried the headline: ‘Kobe Bryant’s Disturbing Rape Case: The DNA Evidence, the Accuser’s Story, and the Half-Confession.’ She has since been suspended by the newspaper.

Guardian columnist Shailja Patel tweeted a 2016 article from ThinkProgress — an arm of the Clinton-affiliated and John Podesta-founded Center for American Progress — linking the rape accusations against Bryant to “victim-blaming”. Patel was found guilty of falsely accusing journalist and caricature artist Tony Mochama of sexual assault and ordered to pay him Sh9 million and fled the country:

Here’s a few tweets of how Kenyans reacted:

A number of assorted “verified” Twitter accounts and users with blue-checkmark profiles focused on rape allegations made against Kobe Bryant after the basketball icon’s tragic death on Sunday.

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Danielle Campoamor, whose writings have been published in the New York Times and Washington Post, characterized Bryant as a rapist who escaped justice by virtue of his social status.

Actress Evan Rachel Wood branded Bryant as a “rapist”:

 “One doesn’t have to operate with great malice to do great harm. The absence of empathy and understanding are sufficient.” Charles M. Blow

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