On Friday I received this email from a disgruntled reader, and though I’ve never posted any mail (good or bad) from readers before, I thought this one might spark an interesting discussion. Here is the email, without the writer’s name attached:
I am very disappointed in your review of the latest Survivor episode, which aired 04-14-11.
It was not necessary at all to make fun at Matt’s religious beliefs.
And this is coming from someone who is Agnostic.
This is also coming from someone who also writes articles for a website (advice column).
I have never once felt the need to poke fun at another in my articles in order to fill my word count quota.
Very disappointed. Maybe you should realize people have the right to believe in what they want. Matt is a real person and honestly he seems like a genuinely nice guy.
No one deserves to have their personal beliefs belittled and poked fun at for a TV show review.
Learn to be respectful of others in your future writings.
I wasn’t exactly surprised by this email, because I thought my commentary on Matt and Survivor might ruffle a few feathers. That said, I stand by everything I’ve written. So in case there are others out there who feel the same way, here is my defense:
Thanks for your email. I appreciate your input, but must defend my post. I won’t bring my personal beliefs into this, but will just say that I am in no way against any religion. I don’t make fun of Matt because he is religious – lots of people who go on Survivor are religious. I make fun of Matt because he seems to be making his appearance on Survivor all about god and religion and that, to me, is hilarious. I have nothing against Matt, his religious beliefs, or anyone else who shares those beliefs. I’m simply making the argument that god does not likely have an interest in reality television. That Matt is not on Redemption Island because god put him there, he’s there because Boston Rob put him there.
You may also write articles for a website, but an advice column is far different than television commentary. The tagline for my blog is “Sharp and Snarky TV Recaps”. Snarky. I don’t poke fun at people to fill my word count, I poke fun at people because that is what I do. In my opinion, if you’re on TV then you’re fair game. I critique, I mock, I judge and I make jokes. Because that’s what it all is – jokes. I respect Matt’s beliefs, but I also reserve the right to mock whatever ridiculous behavior I see on reality television. I mock the girls on Survivor for bending over backwards for Rob, I mock Phillip for being a lunatic, and I mock Matt for attributing his performance on Survivor to god’s will rather than his own game play.
Hope this clears things up for you, though I have no hopes of actually changing your mind. My humor is not for everyone – but just like Matt’s religious beliefs, all I can say is to each his/her own.
Thoughts? Like I said, I stand by everything I’ve written as it’s all in the name of comedy. But do you agree with my to-remain-anonymous reader? Should I be taking things a little easier on the blond wonder?