Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

Earlier this month former editor Sandra Guzman sued the New York Post for being an alleged hellhole of racism and sexism. Today, a recently fired reporter filed a lawsuit claiming he was "banned" from the newsroom for being black.

Austin Fenner, a 20-year veteran reporter, was fired on November 9th, the same day as Guzman. And—if Fenner's claims are true—for the same reason: complaining about the Post publishing that infamous cartoon depicting officers shooting a chimpanzee meant to be Barack Obama. (Was it worth it, New York Post?)

The Huffington Post reports Fenner filed a 27-page complaint in court today which specifically signals out metropolitan editor Michelle Gotthelf and assignment editor Daniel Greenfield as the racists-in-chief. The lawsuit outlines a number of claims that fall just short of the sheer crazy-terribleness of Guzman's, but it's still a model example of (alleged!) racism.

Here are the worst/best parts:

The main thrust of the complaint is that minority Post staffers are subjected to "pervasive discrimination and harassment... based on their race and/or color" at the hands of their nearly all-white colleagues.

Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

This discrimination manifested itself most blatantly in Fenner's claim that, after he criticized the chimpanzee cartoon in the blog Journal-ism, Greenfield and Gotthelf told him he couldn't enter the "Whites Only" newsroom without their permission for the five months before he was ultimately fired:

Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

During the cartoon row, Fenner claims he also witnessed racism directed at New York Governor David Patterson, when editors refused to interview him about the cartoon:

Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

And after Fenner publicly complained about the chimpanzee cartoon he said editors started to get sweary—and not even in a creative, hard-boiled-newspaper-editor-type way:

Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

All this led to that fateful Nov. 9 day, when Fenner was called from an assignment in Brooklyn, ordered to give his notes to a white reporter, and fired.

Dead Chimp Cartoon Spawns Second Employee Lawsuit Claiming Racism at the New York Post

The Post told the Huffington Post that Fenner's claims were "totally false and the claims of discrimination completely baseless." OK, you convinced us! Forget paywalls: The Post should charging for seminars on how to deny accusations that your organization is a seething pit of racism.