The VIEW from here

You’re a mean one, Mr. Editor


Gary Gould — Managing Editor

Gary Gould — Managing Editor

I n the past week I’ve been told by readers I am mean, unprofessional, sarcastic, immature and just plain ignorant — and those comments alone came from a man who is a selfproclaimed superhero who wears a mask and uses a fake name.

I’ve also been criticized for a misspelled word in a story and I was called “negative” for another opinion I offered.

I’m starting to get a bit of a complex here folks. Thankfully I have thick skin, but I am human and I do make mistakes. I also have an opinion, which isn’t always going to be popular, but this space here is reserved for me to express it.

A column I wrote back in May about the man in Burton who called himself a superhero, dressed the part and fired off a shotgun in a mobile home park, drew the ire this weekend of one the “superhero” collegues.

My masked critic wrote me a very well-written, but scathing letter chastising me for comments I made against the superhero arrested in Burton and against other grown adults who dress like caped crusaders in an effort to “fight crime.”

Were my comments filled with sarcasm? They were indeed. Do I feel I was unfair? Not at all.

I accepted the criticism and while I defended myself from some of what this individual had to say, I decided finally it was best to let it go. There’s no sense in arguing with a man dressed to conceal his identity, who uses a fake name and believes (I kid you not) the “natural progression” for one who has served in the military is to become a costumed avenger.

And since when did Superman write letters to newspapers defending the actions of his pal, Batman? Oh right, Superman WORKED for a newspaper.

Another letter writer called me out for using the word “prostrate” instead of “prostate” in a story about a prostate cancer benefit in Davison. Yes, I got it, two different words and meanings. It was a mistake. A careless mistake at that, my apologies.

The reader told me I needed to use spell check (though I’m pretty sure spell check wouldn’t catch a properly spelled word being used incorrectly) and then contacted the source for the story by email to call me out on my errors.

Biting my tongue as I read her e-mail, I just didn’t have it in me at the time to point out she spelled the words ‘bringing’ and

‘will’ incorrectly. But she was right, the error I made was careless and I will see that it doesn’t happen again. In the meantime I’ll leave out the commentary about people living in glass houses.

I also took a little flak for my criticism of roads in Grand Haven during my recent trip there. I will be the first to admit, I loved Grand Haven and my comments were probably un-called for.

As the writer said, I was a “tourist” there and I should have stayed home if I couldn’t “share” the roads and boardwalk with others. The problem is this: I was raised almost as an only child (my siblings were 17 and 20 years older than me) so I really don’t like to share.

But I guess I should learn not only to share, but to play well with others, and stop being such a curmudgeon. Bah!

ggould@mihomepaper.com


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