My letter to the publisher of the Nanaimo Daily News

Dear Hugh,

I started off by sending your parent network a letter to let them know what has been published in your paper, specifically the article titled “Educate First Nations to be Modern Citizens.”

While I am not surprised by the overtly racist opinions that still exist in Canada, I am deeply offended by the notion that you see it fit to publish and spread this hateful speech. Are your advertisers aware that their messages appear beside such regrettable material? Do you think they’ll be keen to advertise in the future? But that’s just business, and is the least of my worries.

What about the human cost?

Do you know what an oppressive world looks like? Do you know what an oppressive world feels like? Do you know that so much of oppression happens because of what people believe? And do you know so much of what people believe is based on what they hear from people and publications that they trust? Do you have any idea of how much power you have? Do you have any idea of how deeply you’ve misused it? How can you sleep knowing that you are actually making the world a worse place to live?

I can tell you what an oppressive world looks like. It looks exactly like your newspaper right now.

I sincerely hope you learn something from this.


Update: Nanaimo Daily has pulled the article, though fortunately and unfortunately, it lives on through the Huffington Post.

Update: Nanaimo Daily’s publisher, Hugh Nicholson, has issued an editorial clarification, in which he states “the letter should not have run“:

In the Wednesday edition of the Nanaimo Daily News, a letter to the editor ran from Mr. Dan Olsen, which has caused considerable consternation among some of our readers.

While we would defend Mr. Olsen’s right to hold and express his opinion, the sentiments expressed were entirely his own and in no way reflect the views of the newspaper.

The letter should not have run.
We apologize for any distress this may have caused our readers.

Hugh Nicholson
Division Manager

Stuff I am involved with that you should know about

Here are a bunch of things I am putting energy into and excited about – and I think I owe these things some attention and I could be doing a better job sharing what I’ve been involving myself in – in general.

  1. March 28, 2013 – Full Moon Party at Upstairs – I’m DJing as AFK at this event – lots of great music and surprises of the sleeves of the folks putting it on. Tickets are inexpensive and the night will be quite worth going out for. It’s not a school night – the next day is Good Friday!
  2. April 5th, 2013 – Symphony in the City at Uptown – this night will feature live music from Kytami, a photobooth and an instrument petting zoo as well as food and refreshments. I’ve been involved  in a marketing advisory role as a volunteer member of their Symphony in the City committee. I’m looking forward to this event as it’s for a good cause (fundraising for the Victoria Symphony) and combines great music with night life.
  3. April 6th, 2013 – TEDxVictoria’s Open House – Want to get inside the team that puts on Victoria’s own TEDx event? This is the best place to do it – here you can meet the team, TEDx speakers, mingle and find your own way to make this year’s event the best yet. I’m involved with TEDxVictoria more than ever before, and in many ways, this year is a big one for us. I am involved as a main Organizer and Director of Marketing and Communications. If you haven’t signed up for our eNewsletter yet, it’s the best way to stay in the loop about what we are doing.

That’s all I have time to say right now. Busy times ahead, many months in the making .. one thing leads to another.