OTTAWA May 18 The managing editor of Canada's
flagship nightly news program was reassigned from his post, a
spokesman said on Thursday, the third media executive to step
down amid a controversy around cultural appropriation and the
lack of diversity in Canadian literature.
Steve Ladurantaye was removed as managing editor of national
broadcaster Canadian Broadcasting Corp's The National show after
he tweeted that he would contribute to an "appropriation prize"
for authors writing about other cultures.
The media fire storm was sparked by an editorial in the
Writers' Union of Canada magazine that suggested there should be
a prize for the "best book by an author who writes about people
who aren't even remotely like her or him."
The editorial, which was contained in an issue that featured
Indigenous authors, gained traction on Twitter with prominent
media personalities, including some of the nation's best-known
columnists, who joked that they would donate to starting up the
prize. Hal Niedzviecki, who wrote the editorial, later resigned
as editor of Write magazine.
The controversy has struck a nerve in Canada, which prides
itself on being culturally diverse but has struggled with its
legacy of treatment of the country's original inhabitants. Prime
Minister Justin Trudeau has promised to rebuild ties with the
country's 1.4 million aboriginals.
Ladurantaye had tweeted that he would donate C$100 ($74) to
the prize. He subsequently deleted the tweet and apologized.
CBC's head of news, Jennifer McGuire, "has made a decision
that the work of redeveloping The National needs the full
attention and focus of the team, and that is not possible given
the current circumstances," spokesman Chuck Thompson said.
Jonathan Kay also left as editor in chief of The Walrus
magazine following an opinion piece he wrote for the National
Post newspaper on the right to debate cultural appropriation.
($1 = C$1.36)
(Reporting by Leah Schnurr; Editing by Dan Grebler)