When I pressed "send" I had a gut feeling the paper would print it, even though the piece is almost 300 words in length -- double what they usually accept.
My letter, along with another writer's, was given its own space away from the pack. Kudos to the Toronto Sun "Letters" editor for keeping it intact, with just a couple of small edits (which I think improved the flow of my piece in those places).
The subject: There was a funny guy by the name of Greg Gutfeld who worked for Fox News. He thought he was being cute by slagging Canada and its outstanding military. I doubt Gutfeld knows much about Canada over and above the stereotypes; he probably thinks we're all Leafs fans up here.
To paraphrase the great Elwy Yost: Dim the houselights, and cue the Rózsa trumpets!
THOSE IN THE KNOW GET IT
Like many Canadians I am rather disturbed by the ridiculous, caustic, and childish comments from Fox News Red Eye host Greg Gutfeld and his merry band of oblivious panelists.
But when Gutfeld mocks Canadian Lt.-Gen. Andrew Leslie's name by saying "an unusual name for a man," then you know he is not to be taken seriously. And certainly not as a satirist as he claims to be. U.S. servicemen and women know the score.
While in England a few years ago I was travelling on a train and a group of American F-15 fighter pilots were in the particular car where I was sitting. Almost immediately several of them introduced themselves and welcomed me aboard. One particular pilot and his weapons officer took me under their wing and we struck up a pleasant conversation. I told them my own father was in the Canadian air force and this seemed to give us a connection. The young fly-boy said, "you guys have great pilots ... we fly with you all the time." Another chap, a cool customer who ignored a drunk who tried several times to ruffle his feathers, told me he had recently been on a pilots' exchange program in Goose Bay and had a lot of fun flying with Canadians.
When we disembarked, the Americans helped with my luggage and wished me a pleasant trip.
My point? Well, we Canadians are understood by those who are in the know. Gentlemen like those I met have the utmost respect for our military and what it represents.
It is an argument or concept not understood by Gutfeld and only helps undermine his whole ignorant and feeble rant.
SIMON ST. LAURENT
(Our military: Underfunded, under-equipped and just outstanding)