Conservative USA Today columnist and University of Tennessee law professor Glenn Reynolds caused an uproar on Twitter when he urged motorists to drive over protesters blocking a highway in North Carolina.
“Run them down,” Reynolds, who also produces the Instapundit website, tweeted late Wednesday with an image of the protesters on I-277.
Twitter suspended the account, but The Huffington Post preserved a screenshot of the tweet:
On Thursday, USA Today suspended the columnist for a month, according to two reports. Bill Sternberg, the newspaper’s editorial page editor, noted that Reynolds’ statement could “be interpreted as an incitement to violence,” Politico reported.
Reynolds’ tweet inspired many on the social media network to urge USA Today and the university to drop Reynolds:
Reynolds himself apologized for the tweet Thursday evening, saying he meant it to say that drivers who feel they are in danger should keep driving.
“I have always supported peaceful protests, speaking out against police militarization and excessive police violence,” he wrote in a statement on USA Today.
Demonstrations have taken place throughout the city since the fatal police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott on Tuesday. Police said Scott was armed and refused to drop his gun; witnesses claimed the 43-year-old black man did not have a weapon and was holding a book.
The protests, some of which have turned violent, prompted N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory (R) to declare a state of emergency late Wednesday.
This article has been updated to include Reynolds’ suspension and apology.