Billy Johnson

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013 at 09:44 AM.

Dear Editor:

My parents grew up in Port St. Joe and now live in Denver, Colorado.  They receive the Star weekly.  As they have spent the last month enjoying the white sandy beaches of their childhood home, I have been looking after their home here in Denver.  Since they aren't here to read The Star, I have taken it home to catch up on the happenings myself.  

Imagine my surprise at the hypocrisy that is your newspaper.  On Page 2 of the12/27/12 edition, there is a lovely article remembering Everett Gant, who was murdered in a hate crime.  The article appropriately puts down the murderer as an ignorant racist.  Hallelujah, I think to myself, Gulf County has finally joined the 21st century.

Then I draw bile when I read the article written by Billy Johnson.  "We can be gay" jumps off the page at me assaulting me with hate.  I remember though, that he is one man with one ignorant opinion and I move on.  

Against my better judgment, I pick up the January 3 edition and run into Mr. Billy Johnson again.  As if disparaging "gays" wasn't enough in the week before, this time he eloquently calls homosexuals "queers;" a term that has been derogatory and hateful for all of my 44 years.  

I tried to remind myself that he is one ignorant man with one ignorant opinion, but decide I can't let it go.  The Star certainly should rise above hate and homophobia and act like a newspaper and not a rag.  Exactly what kind of message are y'all trying to deliver when on Page 2 you renounce hate but on Page 14 you unabashedly allow hate to blossom? That's not a rhetorical question, actually.  I am seeking insight more intelligently explained than "freedom of speech."  

Shame on you. I have spent a lifetime here in the West defending my Southern brothers and sisters.  No more.



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