Public Editor

Feedback about Milton Wolf, tea party too negative

Why is Milton Wolf smiling? Because he thinks U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor’s loss on Tuesday in a Republican primary could help Wolf energize the tea party to help Wolf beat Pat Roberts in the August U.S. Senate primary in Kansas.
Why is Milton Wolf smiling? Because he thinks U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor’s loss on Tuesday in a Republican primary could help Wolf energize the tea party to help Wolf beat Pat Roberts in the August U.S. Senate primary in Kansas. The Associated Press

A reader offers a fair criticism of my “Networking” column today in the 913 news magazine. (It’s available only in the print edition.)

In it, I round up comments from social media and KansasCity.com about topics in the news. One of the things I covered this week was Milton Wolf’s challenge to Pat Roberts for one of Kansas’ seats in the U.S. Senate.

“Today’s section was so one sided against Dr. Milton Wolf it was reprehensible and it certainly goes against the description in your bio —‘The emphasis here is always on fairness and accuracy.’” wrote the emailer. “Please let me know how I can respond to this blatant one-sided ‘Networking.’”

I can’t disagree with her. I found very little defense of Wolf’s campaign when I was collecting comments for the column. And yes, that’s defensive, so maybe the answer is that I simply should have chosen a different topic. My fault, no question.

Here’s a constant problem I find both with “Networking” and with other ways I relay readers’ thoughts. And it’s tough love, tea party supporters and detractors alike: I hear an extremely small number of good, non-profane and factually-defensible voices in support of tea party candidates. And their critics on the left are often equally nasty and hyperbolic.

I’d love to get more reasonable feedback about tea party issues, like the email above. I know there are many people who are fully capable of articulating their points about cutting government spending — but social media isn’t a place where rational thought rises to the top, unfortunately.

But again, I could have avoided the problem completely with a different, less-polarizing subject matter.

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