A woman on Twitter, who had shared her story of feeling violated at a hospital during a medical procedure, was advised by journalist associated with Leftist propaganda website, The Wire, to not to use her privilege against a man she presumed to be from the lower class.
The issue stemmed from a Twitter thread by one Daribha Lyndem, in which she expressed her discomfort and frustration after going to a hospital for an ECG (Electrocardiogram) test and laying on the bed naked as a cleaning employee strolled into the trauma ward where the test was being performed.
In a subsequent tweet, she wrote, “I feel exposed, embarrassed and insulted. The hospital should have ensured that as a patient I would be safe. The housekeeping staffer used the excuse that he needed to take out the machine. How the fu** can they even be allowed inside unless called.”
In another tweet in the thread, she further wrote, “The nurse could have taken me to a private room but she was too lazy to, she did it where it was convenient for her. The staffer was a creep who walked in and was apologising to my husband more than me! He saw me but he apologised to my husband!”
However, The Wire journalist then, posted a tweet telling Daribha that she was committing deliberate “violence” against an accident by “weaponizing” her privilege against that of a man who was likely far lower on the social ladder.
In the tweet, Naomi wrote, “Daribha, might I suggest you read the book Conflict is Not Abuse. Nobody is denying that you felt traumatised, but in weaponising your privilege against that of a man who is presumably far lower on the class chain you’re also committing violence deliberately against an accident.”
When a Twitter user requested her to relook the tweets before making any admonishing statements, she reiterated her point that it is all an attribute of class imbalances and one should not conclude for something that is “possible.”
It is worth noting that, while other people were sympathising with Daribha’s plight, The Wire’s Naomi Barton rushed in to play her “class imbalance” game, piling up on the victim rather than the perpetrator.
Recently, The Wire journalist appeared to have leveraged the hijab controversy to normalise violence against Hindus.
Barton had expressed that if a Muslim woman’s dupatta was taken away from her, the former would have swarmed to the streets, without thinking twice before sacrificing the blood of Muslims. Many people on social media saw this as an inflammatory Tweet intended to incite Muslims to respond with violence in response to the hijab controversy.
The Wire and its problematic stand on sexual harassment
In January 2018, a journalist at The Wire had revealed on Facebook how she was heckled and manhandled while covering a story. The Wire journalist Damayantee Dhar was covering a story in Ahmedabad on alleged caste discrimination when she was heckled and abused. The attackers as per her were Dalit men. She alleged that one Keval Rathod, advocate/dalit activist, kept screaming “Brahmanwad Manuwad media” and threatened her with an atrocities case.
However, what shook Dhar more was that when she narrated the ordeal to the Editors at The Wire, she was asked to let it go and accept it as a professional hazard. That if she filed and complaint or spoke about it, it would harm to “movement”. Some even tried to scare her saying that if she spoke up, she would invite counter complaints against herself.
In October 2018, their Consulting Editor Vinod Dua was accused of stalking and sexual abuse by filmmaker Nishtha Jain. Soon after, another filmmaker had accused him of inappropriate behaviour. Despite the accuser’s wishes that Dua be fired so that a fair investigation could take place, the Wire continued to have him as their Consulting Editor. In December 2018, Dua refused to face the woman who had accused him of molestation and the external committee that was set up to probe the allegations then dissolved itself in frustration as it was ‘unable to proceed further’ due to lack of unconditional consent.
Similarly, another journalist associated with The Wire, Akhil Kumar, who was accused of rape, was put back to work without offering any explanation. At least two women had accused Akhil Kumar of sexual assault and emotional harassment. However, The Wire had not issued any statement with regard to these allegations.