WTF Is Going On At Bon Appétit?
Three employees canceled for racism and homophobia.
Bon Appétit has had nothing short of a chaotic and turbulent week with its racist culture and homophobic comments from staffers surfacing on social media.
On Monday, a brownface Halloween photo of Bon Appétit editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport and his wife circulated on social media. The very next day, stans dug up homophobic social media posts by editor Alex Delany. While Rapoport apologized for the racist photo and resigned in response to the backlash, Delaney has yet to comment on his past posts.
On Instagram, former editor-in-chief Rapoport admitted he “has not championed an inclusive vision” and would “reflect on the work [he] need[s] to do as a human being.” He was soon replaced by ‘Healthyish’ editor Amanda Shapiro, who is now interim editor-in-chief.
Delany has a history of making insensitive comments on the Internet. Over the last decade, Delany has made posts on social media varying from a Confederate flag cake, objectifying women and using a gay slur to refer to a pile of sticks as “a bunch of a f------s lying on to of each other.” Senior food editor Andy Baraghani, an Iranian-American queer man, voiced his thoughts on Delany’s vine using the gay slur on Instagram, describing the video as “hurtful and triggering and all too familiar.”
Ironically, Baraghani’s gotten his fair share of accusations. Former staffer Alyse Whitney claimed he and interim EIC Amanda Shapiro had two of her stories killed.
One piece was an interview that Baraghani almost canceled over “petty feelings.” But the other was about Whitney’s struggle with her Korean-American identity, to which Baraghani allegedly said wasn’t deep or emotionally resonating enough to be published.
Rapoport’s resignation incited many members of Bon Appétit’s staff to speak out about their experience with discrimination and tokenism in the workplace. Assistant editor Sohla El-Waylly has been especially vocal, and in an Instagram Story she stated that she’s been used in ‘Test Kitchen’ videos as “a display of diversity” and that “none of the people of color have been compensated for their appearances” on the show.
Further criticisms sparked questions of how the publication would improve since they allowed the culture of racism to run rampant for so long. In their official statement, Bon Appétit apologized for their complicity and acknowledged “the much broader and longstanding impact of racism at these brands.” The publication admitted that they “tokenize many BlPOC staffers” and “many new BlPOC hires have been in entry-level positions with little power.”
In efforts to make BA more inclusive in the future, the company said it will be prioritizing people of color for the EIC position, implementing anti-racism training and resolving pay inequalities.
Y’all better make my girl Sohla EIC after all this.
Editor’s note: *Brad voice* Delany
Maya Lang is an Online Writer at Rowdy Magazine. She enjoys playing guitar, staying up far too late, and daydreaming about living in the '80s. You can reach her at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org for more info and movie recommendations.