I’ve been called many things over the last two weeks.
First, we received an anonymous sms calling an editorial I wrote a few weeks ago “pink”, which I assume was meant to be some kind derogatory comment about my sexuality. Why this person felt the need to make the comment, I don’t know. I can only assume they’re intolerant and ignorant, and also a little bad at insults, if we’re being honest.
Then, someone commented that my editorial photo makes me look pompous and that I should realign my ideas so that they fit in more appropriately with the university’s, because my liberal views are too different from the conservative stance UP has taken (this is not the first time I’ve been told this, to be fair). First of all, I don’t think Tuks is that conservative at all. Or that anything I’ve said in any editorial I’ve written has been particularly liberal. Trust me when I say I could turn the radical liberalism up a notch. Secondly, I wasn’t aware that it was my job to promote the ideals and values of any institution, let alone those of this university. I am not the editor of propaganda. Thirdly, I’m sorry if you think I look pompous in my photo. Apparently my booze face and my pompous face are fairly similar. If you feel that strongly about it you can blame my bone structure.
Later, I was standing in the ATM queue while people in front of me were discussing Perdeby. They weren’t being very nice about us, complaining that they never find anything we publish interesting. They seemed to attribute this directly to how boring I was. Which is fair enough, you’re more than welcome to have that opinion. But if you would like us to write about something that interests you, tell us about it. Don’t just stand there b**ching about it. I will say this though: typically when people have this complaint it’s because they want us to write about something like stamp collecting or flowers or the sounds that whales make or how the department of dentistry bought a new machine. Riveting stuff, usually.
I like, and frequently encourage, criticism. Tell me that I suck at my job. Tell me that I have a political agenda. Tell me I can’t spell. Tell me any of these things, if you feel they are true. I will gladly engage with someone who is criticising from an informed, intelligent position. But don’t make sweeping generalisations or mindless, irrelevant assumptions.
Regardless, hopefully this week we have enough variety to excite even our toughest critics. We have what I believe to be a brilliant satirical piece on hipsters, as well as great articles on Kony 2012 and on religion in the student community. We also review the current production of Animal Farm, which I highly recommend. We also take a look at Blade Nzimande’s determination to introduce compulsory indigenous language education at a tertiary level.
Tonight is the Varsity Cup semi-final. Which I have no doubt we’ll win. I’m sure you’ll all be there tonight. You can find me in the beer tent if you want to come ask me about my pompous bone structure or my “pink” writing style.
Exit, pursued by the bear