Sunday, August 12, 2012

Letters to the editor

I am the last person to want to continue our conversation on Michael Valentine’s comments last week. But being a publisher and human being, I will second-guess myself after reading the responses from readers. There were many good points.

The COURIER readers comments are managed by Kathryn Dunn and she makes every effort to make sure many voices are heard. We have criteria for people to follow, but no blanket policies on what is refused. Much of it is common sense, something our managing editor has a lot of. We take each letter on a case-by-case basis.

In retrospect, I don’t think we should have published Mr. Valentine’s comments. There was really nothing to advance a conversation on anything current. It started with a quote from my father Martin that was over 30 years old. When I first read the comments, that’s what hit me. Old, old news. I cannot remember a reader comment so passionately negative about old stuff that went on in the city. It was almost a history lesson of Claremont events. This was an eye-opener for me.

Obviously, it was also hard to take the criticism of my father. Unfair or not, I had to ask myself…why? It clearly brought out old wounds of losing him, so much so, I didn’t even show the edition to my mother Janis. It would only upset her.

My comment to Mr. Valentine’s letter has been rightfully construed as projecting a “love it or leave it” attitude. That was not my intention. While I might have been a bit oversensitive, I’ve learned the love and defense of our parents extends even after they have left us.

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