Why no manuscript letters in the age of high tech?

Dear Editor,


Some time back one of our dailies to my bewilderment had virtually stopped printing my letters for almost a year. I begged for an explanation for such an unceremonious cessation since I wasn’t conscious that I had violated any of their sacred rules; in addition I had enjoyed a long relationship with them.

Had I crossed the line? But I was ignored, wasn’t given the courtesy of a reply. Well that was that until a well-known, high-profile columnist saw me make mention of it a long time after, and became concerned. So he called me up for some clarification, and thus a better understanding.

He made inquiries and was told – as he related to me − the reason was I was making hand-written submissions to the editor which they found rather rudimentary, obsolete, out of order, and unacceptable in this enlightened age of mass communications and touch-button, touch-screen electronic high-tech gadget advancement.

Of course no one should disagree with improvement and progress; it’s the way of the world, so why should we remain plodders not keeping in step with modernization.

But the excuse the person who took responsibility for prohibiting my letters covered himself with was rather specious, since it gave the impression that my missives over the years were all hand-written.

I was very much annoyed, for they were nothing of the sort. Yes, I did submit such letters to that particular paper, but not more than about three times and no more than half a page – if so long; it was not, definitely not, a habitual practice.

Now I can feel the question being asked: why am I now onto this dead issue, so long gone? Well here’s why. A few persons not so long ago related to me similar experiences they encountered upon submitting hand-written material to wherever that was rejected. But quickly let me say that I understand and appreciate the world of electronics, and though it’s not my forte, I can understand and will excuse some operations, since the nature of the work is so structured and programmed that one has no other option.

But this is what I can’t figure out: is every operation, everywhere so technologically advanced that they can no longer spend a minute or two in reading what someone without the aid of a computer or some such gadget has written? Why not if you can assist? Why deny a person simply because they do not have some electronic apparatus? And this can be so frustrating for ordinary, everyday people who have something to say and really want to be heard.

That could be done in the wink of an eye. Some folks take time and pleasure, delight themselves in presenting a style going out of style, penmanship. Editor, sometimes we go overboard in trying to impress, overdo and outdo others. Look!

You have some indulging in ridiculous excuses forgetting we have our own unique traditions, customs, folklore, etc.

There are cultural practices which some want to twist into odd forms. Listen out, you may sooner rather than later be hearing Creole being ‘englishified’ and queh queh being sung in grammatical English. Why not? It’s the age of high tech.


Yours faithfully,
Frank Fyffe

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