By Prince Hakeem
Well this piece of news is definitely meta.
According to several news sources, longtime TMZ reporter and personality Van Lathan has been fired from the celebrity gossip site. This news comes after Lathan got into a nasty verbal altercation with fellow co-star Michael Babcock. Apparently the two had a passionate disagreement in regards to politics. Lathan, who famously called out Kanye West during his “slavery was a choice” rant on TMZ Live a couple of years ago, has become a prominent and popular face on the TV side of TMZ’s brand. Babcock has been known to lean right on the political scale. These fundamental disagreements has increasingly become a source of tension between the two.
All of this went down during a taping of the site’s online ‘TMZ Live’ show. The confrontation had been edited out for TV, but sources claim that it happened about a week and a half ago. Sources went on to state that the confrontation carried over into the newsroom where Lathan told Babcock that there would be trouble if he “ever embarrassed him like that again.” Van later met with the site’s attorneys and was suspended. He was then dismissed a few days later.
An insider defended Lathan, citing the competitive work environment which often pits staffers against one another for the sake “good tv”.
“Van’s not mean-spirited. Anything that happened is a product of that environment,” said the insider.
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