Reader William Katz points out this Rush & Molloy gossip item from the New York Daily News regarding the fight at the New York Times:
A catfight at The New York Times Friday still has staffers in shock.
The dustup between two female editors in the Styles department disrupted work on the Thursday and Sunday Styles sections as co-workers froze at the fracas.
Fashion editor Anita LeClerc was the aggressor and her superior, deputy editor Mary Ann Giordano, the victim, sources say.
The two had exchanged words just moments before, allegedly over turf, and LeClerc began stomping around the office, muttering loudly to herself. But when Giordano, a talented import from the Metro section, came over in a conciliatory way and tried to smooth things over, LeClerc made it physical.
“She shoved Mary Ann and pushed her, and Mary Ann said, ‘Don’t you touch me! Don’t you touch me!’” says a source. “Mary Ann grabbed her wrists to try to stop her, and [LeClerc] just started flailing.”
Top editor Trip Gabriel grabbed LeClerc and dragged the still-sputtering stylista into his office as Giordano followed.
“They were in there for a long time,” reports a source. When they came out, Anita went back to her desk, but Mary Ann went out for a walk. She looked shaken.”
The scrap at the newspaper could inspire jokes (“Pulitzers for Pugilism at the Black-and-Blue Lady?”) but it’s not funny, sources say. “Mary Ann is afraid now,” says one. “She’s a really nice woman, too. She keeps candy on her desk!”
That’s why some at the respected broadsheet are baffled as to why no apparent disciplinary action has been taken against LeClerc. A Times spokeswoman did not answer questions about the slugfest, or disciplinary action, by deadline. Calls to LeClerc, Giordano and Gabriel were not returned.
Mr. Katz comments:
This is almost hilarious – a physical fight between two editors at The New York Times. Of course, the Times didn’t report it. Clearly, word just got out.
But there are very serious questions for Times management:
1. Was this a war of choice, or legitimate self defense?
2. Why didn’t The Times immediately bring the matter to the United Nations?
3. Did this incident occur because Times management was too busy dealing with pressure from the Israel lobby?
4. Did one side fear that the other had WMD? How did they get it so wrong?
5. This fight between two women was apparently broken up by a man? Doesn’t this indicate that The Times, despite the dreams of Pinch Sulzberger, is still a symbol of patriarchal domination, exploitation and control? Should Sulzberger resign, to be replaced by Drew Gilpin Faust?
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