Monday, April 15, 2013

Waste of Space

I agree with Peter Schorsch's assessment that Ernest Hooper should not be given column space in the Tampa Bay Times. I understand that the newspaper wants a columnist to do light entertainment. The problem is Hooper's prose is really bad. Schorsch cites this passage from a Hooper column.

Last paragraph (before his ridiculous sign-off of “That’s all I’m saying” — as if that wasn’t clear already), he writes, “my 11-year-old has taken to making stuff out of patterened duct tape, like flowers, purses and even cardboard-based sandals. Online sites show her how to do it, and she’s giddy about it. … I don’t get it, either.”

I got nothing against Hooper. I'm just amazed that the Tampa Bay Times pays him to phone in columns. It's a good gig for a writer if you can get the job. However, the Metro section should be used by a columnist to discuss problems facing communities in the Tampa Bay area. We don't have enough reporting on matters of crime, economic, environmental, racial and government issues facing local citizens. If the Times wants a light entertainment columnist than they should hire someone whose columns don't read like they were written on the back of a napkin five minutes before deadline.

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