Journalist who broke Aziz Ansari story attacks news anchor

  • 18/01/2018
Actor and comedian Aziz Ansari was accused of sexual misconduct by a young photographer.
Actor and comedian Aziz Ansari was accused of sexual misconduct by a young photographer. Photo credit: Newshub.

The journalist who broke the story of Aziz Ansari's alleged sexual misconduct has attacked a news anchor in a blistering email.

Katie Way, 22, wrote a piece for detailing an upsetting sexual encounter between Ansari and an anonymous young female photographer.

The woman, known only as 'Grace', alleges that during a sexual encounter Ansari behaved aggressively and repeatedly ignored her attempts to slow things down.

Way's piece ignited debate on issues of consent, assault and 'mixed signals'. While many people have condemned Ansari's behaviour, others say 'Grace' had no right to complain because she didn't adequately signal her discomfort with the situation. 

Ashleigh Banfield, a veteran broadcaster from news channel HLN, heavily criticised the piece live on air on Monday (local time). She called the allegations "appalling", and accused 'Grace' of trying to end Ansari's career over "a bad date".

During a show on Tuesday (local time), Banfield read out a scathing email she said she received from Way after Monday's show.

In the email, Way calls Banfield a "burgundy lipstick, bad highlights, secondwave feminist has-been" who "nobody under the age of 45 has heard of".

She called Banfield's on-air rant "one of the lowest, most despicable things I've ever seen in my entire life", and accused her of trying to "piggyback off of the fact that another woman was brave enough to speak up…about sexual assault".

Banfield's response to the email was to point out Way's hypocrisy.

"If you truly believe in the #MeToo movement," she said on air after reading out a portion of the email, "If you truly believe in women's rights, if you truly believe in feminism, the last thing you should do is attack someone in an ad hominem way for her age - I'm 50 - and for my highlights."