A columnist at a University of Michigan student newspaper said his apartment doorway was vandalized with eggs, hot dogs, gum and vitriolic taunts because of a column he wrote mocking liberal ideology.
Omar Mahmood, a Muslim who identifies as politically conservative, said vandalism overnight Friday was a response to his satirical column last month headlined "Do The Left Thing," published in the conservative Michigan Review. The column mocks trigger warnings, microaggressions and progressive ideals and calls attention to white privilege.
According to a report at the College Fix by Derek Draplin, editor of the Michigan Review, the mess at Mahmood's door included a picture of the devil and notes saying, "Shut the fuck up," "Why do you even go here?! Leave!!" and "Everyone hates you, you violent prick."
The Michigan Daily's editor-in-chief did not immediately comment. The newspaper had not covered the reported vandalism until Tuesday. (SEE UPDATE BELOW FOR COMMENT)
Mahmood in the past has referred to President Barack Obama as a war criminal for use of predator drones. He also wrote a review of the film "Dear White People," saying its story was a mess, but raised thought-provoking questions, and about the cultural background of his family.
Mahmood did not return request for comment from The Huffington Post.
UPDATE, 11:45 p.m.: In a statement to HuffPost from the Michigan Daily's newly-inducted editor-in-chief, Jennifer Calfas said the paper had so far not commented on reports about Omar Mahmood's status with on their staff since it was considered an internal matter and out of respect for his privacy. However, Calfas said the termination of Mahmood from the Daily's staff was due to how he handled a conflict over his writing for both the regular student newspaper, and the conservative Michigan Review, and was not related to his political beliefs.
The statement reads in part:
In mid-November, the former columnist authored a column in The Michigan Review, which made his continued involvement with both the Daily and the Review untenable. The way in which the author satirically mocked the experiences of fellow Daily contributors and minority communities on campus in his Review column violated our values and integrity as a publication. His actions created a conflict of interest regarding his employment with both the Daily and the Review.
In a meeting with the Daily’s editors, the former columnist was given the option of staying with either the Daily or the Review, and at the time he said he would choose the Daily. However, he later took his version of the story to The College Fix and The Daily Caller, as stated above, violated several of our bylaws and ultimately led to his termination on December 4.
While the Daily respects the free speech rights of members of the campus community, our bylaws do not allow writers to discuss the internal politics and governance of the Daily in external publications while remaining part of the Daily staff. The former columnist was offered an opportunity to appeal this decision, which he has chosen not to pursue.
The writer was terminated because he violated a number of our publication’s bylaws, not because of his political beliefs. In our 124-year history, The Michigan Daily has aimed to serve the campus, the state, and the nation with our coverage and journalistic integrity. Our writers in the past and present have a variety of political perspectives — conservative, liberal, and points in between — and we expect that variety to continue. Consistent with this tradition, the Daily serves as a voice for all students, including those with all political perspectives, racial backgrounds, or sexual orientations, to name a few.
Omar Mahmood responded to the Daily's statement on Wednesday by saying, "The glaring problem with the Daily's statement is that they don't mention the apology I was forced to make to someone whom I didn't even know. That was where I drew the line."
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