To the Editor:
It is interesting that Mr. Eckersley had to check out a dictionary to find the definition of the word “cruel”. The point of my letter was that someone was trying to volunteer and be helpful, and he was rebuked. And to allude to the idea that because of his kindness he is somehow now a dissenter or wants to dig holes for private outhouses — this makes you queasy? I do not have to check the dictionary to comprehend that this type of rebuke is not specifically worded that way under the definition of “cruel”, but in my mind it is cruel. Mr. Bunn, the recipient of the rebuke, agrees with me.
After my letter was published, so many people phoned, stopped by my residence, stopped me uptown or at the hockey game and thanked me for submitting it. The first negative comment communicated to me was the one written by you.
One older woman that I do not know but who knew me, came up when I was uptown and said, “Thank you so much for your letter, it is so good to see someone finally talk about having civility.” It is interesting that she used the word civility, just like your title. Prior to my letter, many people have contacted me with issues of what they deem as wrongdoing; these contacts have increased since that letter.
I am busy working on a degree and I cannot deal with everything that is brought before me (although I sincerely wish I could, and am grateful for the contacts) nor can I always go to every meeting, but what I read in the Advance about the way Mr. Bunn was treated really bugged me — no one deserves to be treated like that. And it is not just disagreeing! It is also the patronizing and brushing off, and the projected feeling that you alluded to, that these are ignorant people that do not understand what builds a community (you didn’t really need to explain that) and maybe these rebels should just go dig their outhouses.
Oh, yes: Mr. Bunn was also one of the many that thanked me for that letter, and was happy to see it in print.