I had a phone conversation with John Hueston yesterday. John is the president and editor of our local paper, the Aylmer Express, a paper I mentioned in a recent post on my site. John took issue with my words, and so he reached out to express his thoughts and feelings. It was a lively conversation that included segments of disagreement, explanation, and common ground.
The post in which the offending words appear was not an open letter like the previous post I had written. It was more of a journal entry documenting my emotional state and my reactions to the events of the past months as I experienced them at the time. As a result, I didn’t make the effort I should have to review the sources of my dismay and verify whether my impressions at the time held firm still today, when the dust of those events has somewhat settled.
The offending words in my post read as follows: “Our local paper, in addition to some straightforward reporting, also publishes editorials that are barely less incendiary than Pastor Hildebrandt’s speeches. This also escalates tension.”
My intention with these sentences and the surrounding paragraphs was to shine a light on the sources of escalation in our community. In November, when John published his editorials and I read them, they struck me as harsh, mean, and unhelpful. Having gone back and read those same editorials, with the advantage of hindsight and recent history, they strike me today as appropriately blunt and properly confrontational. They are the words of someone who cares passionately for his community.
What started in my mind as, “Well, that doesn’t seem very helpful…” grew into the aforementioned paragraph. The intention of my words was certainly not to equate John’s life’s work and impact on Aylmer and community with anyone else’s, but I can see how they could be taken that way. And so I owe John an apology. In retrospect, my words were unwarranted.
As a result of this reflection on my part I offer an apology to Mr. Hueston and have retracted the words from my original post, with a link to this explanation.
6 thoughts on “A Humble Retraction”
I like people who will stand up and admit they made a mistake. I also like people with passion who respond intuitively it’s people like that who often misspeak but are willing to acknowledge their misstep and move on to protect and care for others.
I have written to the paper repeatedly and they will not publiah anything but their own truth. That is the problem in my eyes.
Well, did you see the letter they published from Susan Mutch a few months back? That was definitely not their own truth…
Any idea who Henry is managing to attract to his congregation? Are these folks within his own cultural group or outside of it?
The “protest tourists” are completely outside his cultural group. I doubt they are interested in joining his church though.
Hi Jen, I work at the Express, where we take letters to the editor very seriously. Despite your claims of repeated efforts, we have checked and can find no record of correspondence with your name. (Letters that are anonymous or those with false contact information are very rarely considered for publication.) Please forward your previous communications to firstname.lastname@example.org