I love newspapers and rue their demise in the face of the Internet’s news immediacy, nevertheless they don’t help their survival by pandering to every nutter offence-taking complainant who calls them.
Consider this disgrace by the New Zealand Herald yesterday. It was written by their Health reporter, Emma Russell, doubtless and understandably bored by writing endless bloody coronavirus stories.
Nevertheless Emma deserves having her pants pulled down and copping a damn good caning.
What happened was this.
A new Bay of Plenty coffee roastery opened and whimsically called itself OCD, this standing for “Obsessive Coffee Drinkers”, which a high percentage of us are and derive great pleasure from. All perfectly harmless.
Nevertheless this non-event sparked offence-taking, as always by a female, in this case a 40 year old New Plymouth woman called Francesca Eldridge.
What this sad sack whined about to the newspaper and began an online complain over, was the use of the word “obsessive”.
Francesca apparently suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, thus claimed “It was deeply upsetting and hurtful that a company had chosen to coin their business name from a mental illness that had caused her suffering.”
She babbled on at length in this vein; “feeling suicidal, loss of quality of life, massive impact on her ability to work, socialise and huge impact on my marriage”, none of which surprises.
Plainly she suffers from extreme self-obsession. She’s also either spectacularly ignorant or mad or both and it’s utterly disgraceful that the Herald gave her space.
Can we assume Francesca would have a fainting fit should she hear perhaps the Argentinian rugby captain say in a pre-match interview, the team’s obsessed with beating the All Blacks, which they later claimed, or me saying I’m obsessed with buying books, which I concede, or someone saying they’re obsessed with London, or eating Chinese (their food, not the people) and so on ad-infinitum.
Much more of this and Emma Russell will be combing asylums to pursue new creative complaining opportunities. The Herald publicising this crap simply encourages her as well as annoying its readers.
This non-event catering to the admitted mental problems of the complainant was a disgrace.