Lockington's Everyday Fiji ... Life Goes On

Allen Lockington is a self-employed customs agent and business consultant who has regular articles published in Fiji. I thank Allen for permission to reprint some of them in this political blog. They remind us that life goes on, whatever the political situation. And it's good to know that.

Keep the Respect: Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor are now popular reading in the newspapers. I believe that when we write to the Letters to the Editor we are writing TO the Editor, hence the title,  but somehow over time the column has changed.  The Editor is bypassed and it has become the Voice of the people where anything goes.  I’ve noticed during the years I’ve been writing that  some contributors take things personally, many do not stick to the point or subject, and many target other writers.

Tact and respect used to be  the order of the day.  When one contributor responded to another he or she would address the person as Mister, Miss or Missus. Or if the person was an academic it would be Doctor or Honorable or whatever title the person merited.

The Letters to the Editor column is open to the public, and all writers should show respect to others. Nowadays, however,  writers refer to others by their first name or only the surname,  e.g. “A letter by Allen” or “I believe Lockington’s opinion” … !  This may be intended as friendly but if there's any doubt it pays to be polite and formal. I very seldom respond to people’s opinions but when I do, it’s always with respect, even if I totally disagree with that person.

Let’s keep the open column a place where debate is healthy and respectful. Name calling we can do around the tanoa and in private.  If you want a lesson in that, join me at the Lautoka market and be enlightened.


Keep the Respect said…
Nation building as usual. Although nothing beats your letter to the FT editor on 'pony rides'.
And Alan, in your view, is taking over a democratically elected government with guns 'respectful'?
Croz Walsh said…
@ Keep the Respect ... I can't see any connection between Allen's (note the spelling) short article and your accusations. For the past few weeks there have been similar nonsensical comments on Allen's articles. From this I can only conclude, their writers cannot understand what Allen writes, or that they wish to turn even the most innocent article into an attack or Government, or that they have personal vendetta against Allen.

Explain your argument and position, or cease writing such comments. This is not a place to make wild accusations.
Keep the respect said…
Do you mean like Croz' personal attack on Savea Sano Malifa?
And Alan, where is your answer to the question that in your esteemed view is the taking over of a legitimate democraticaly elected government by men with guns 'respectful'? What about human rights abuses by members of this illegal military junta - in your view is that 'respectful'?
Croz Walsh said…
@ Keep the Respect... You persist (I think deliberately) in spelling Allen's name wrongly.

Re. Malifa: I criticised the argument. I did not attack the man. I also backed this up, using his own arguments. If you cannot see the difference, it is because you choose not to. This is far worse than bias; it is bigotry, which makes further discussion pointless.
Allen said…
Bula Keep the respect : It is a fact that taking over a democratically elected government with guns is not respectful.

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