TC Media Editor Making it Personal in Cornwall Over Glens Poppy Defacing Supporting H Lt Colonel Jim Brownell

TC Media Editor Making it Personal in Cornwall Over Glens Poppy Defacing Supporting H Lt Colonel Jim Brownell

dockery poppy joking MODCORNWALL Ontario – Politics has been compared to war in some ways; but sometimes it’s just petty and sometimes it’s just personal.

Maybe it’s because The Seaway News is the number three media in Cornwall? ( they moved up after Corus Radio shut down its newsroom losing three jobs in Cornwall)

Before CFN was created I had applied to work at the Seaway News as a humble journalist.  Rick Shaver at the time made a joke of hiring a student instead.   Apparently he did the same thing with seeker chick editor, and my former protege Jason Setnyk.

Fast forward a few years and TC had Rick take me out to lunch asking for me to become the Seaway News Editor and for TC to buy out CFN.

Clearly at that meeting my feelings were that Rick was doing what he was told by his superiors.   I’m not sure what he told head office; but there was no magic at the tete a tete.

Todd Lihou was brought back to journalism and became editor instead, and they added a writer position after awhile as they’d fallen to the bottom of the pack here in our market, even behind the lowly seeker chicks.

Jim BrownellFast forward to this year, and for some inexplicable reason much beloved and honoured former Liberal MPP  Jim Brownell decided to join up with a motley pack which included of all people, hyper conservative Tammy Hart, who’s the deputy mayor of South Stormont where Mr. Brownell resides.

boycott removedThe group’s  first incarnation, a boycott CFN group was taken down for the use of hate symbols and harassment.   In this case apparently anti-semitic language/images was posted.

I emailed Mr. Brownell and asked him if he was aware of some of the antics of this group and who was in it and why?  Chiefly I emailed him about its leader defacing the poppy.  When one of our contributors did a story about the defacement of the poppy a representative from the Legion responded.

“It is a first. I have never seen such a blatant defacement of our sacred symbol and believe that if other Canadians could see it, they’d be as outraged as I am,” says Bill Maxwell, who is secretary of the Legion’s Poppy and Remembrance Committee.

Now at the top of this page is the image.  We have whited out the actual offensive image at the centre; but you can see the originator of it mocking those that were offended.

Now I think this is personally rather childish.   Just for further reference I would like you to all know NO POPPYS were hurt during the making of the picture.

The image was made in tribute to one of the group’s members who was suspended from the social media group for violations of the conditions.

Personally as someone whose grand uncle was one of our Canadian troops that helped liberate the Bergen Belson concentration camp in WWII, and had another grand uncle who was a guerrilla fighter in WWII and then finished his career in the Israeli army as a Colonel, a real one; not an honorary one, maybe that was why I was shocked and offended myself?

Mr. Brownell sent this via email  after all of the images and info were emailed to him and he responded clearly so it’s not like he could say he wasn’t aware.In total nearly 20 emails went back and forth.

I am not my brother’s keeper, but I can still be a friend with my brother, even if I do not believe in or agree with comments from my brother. The same goes for my friend. I don’t abandon family or friends, just because they write or say something I don’t agree with. So stay out of my life, and don’t try to make me feel guilty, because I DON’T FEEL GUILTY, IN ANY WAY!
I support Democracy.  I support the Canadian Charter of Rights and Free Speech.  However Mr. Brownell’s profile picture at the time was shot by myself. I shared with him if he was going to actively participate in this group that he should use another photo and that I was taking back my permission for him to use it.
He has stated that this was his favorite photo taken of him during his political career which was an honour for me as I’m not really known for my photography.  He had invited me to Queen’s Park to attend his private member’s bill passing.
When he didn’t take the photo down I had facebook assist him which resulted in a rage of comments by Mr. Brownell on his personal facebook page which are still present and visible to the public as of press time.
Just wanted you to know that my posts are now without a photo. Unfortunately, Cornwall’s BLOGGER had Facebook remove it, as he took the photograph. My staff at Queen’s Park, in 2011, placed it as my profile photo, and I had used it since that time, as it was the only photo I had on the day that my Private Members’ Bill was debated and passed in the Legislature.
Apparently, Cornwall’s BLOGGER had taken the photo, and he has now asked that it be removed on Facebook. Unfortunately, I did not know how to remove it, so I guess I’m going to need assistance in getting a new photo with my posts. Cornwall’s BLOGGER can take the photo and shove it where the sun doesn’t shine! To my Facebook friends, I’m sorry for being so blunt, but Cornwall’s BLOGGER is way over the top.
That’s where Todd Lihou and those wacky Seaway News folks entered.  Mr. Lihou also had been a member of the hate group and the current boycott group.   He started a page to help Mr. Brownell get a new facebook profile pic which eventually was him in his uniform of the Glens, an honoury title.   Mr. Brownell still participated in the hate group (which has now gone underground).
To clarify; Hon. Lt Colonel Jim Brownell is actively participating in a hate group whose leader, while in the group, defaced the poppy which Mr. Brownell is aware of and didn’t choose the defend the poppy; but chose to continue while defending the very person that defaced it.
sept 5 FACEBOOK thibault calling me fat cat in the hat
Denis Thibault, besides being a City Councilor in Cornwall and an exec at the Ontario Training Board, is a writer for….The Seaway News.
I’ve been called a lot worse than a Fat Cat in the Hat.  I’ll certainly find a way to endure; but this is someone that makes an awful lot of public monies, some of which are mine, that is attacking me.
If you run your mouse over who like’s his comment though these are the names that show up.
sept 5 FACEBOOK thibault calling me fat cat in the hat likes
You have Rick Shaver, manager of the Seaway News and former chair of the Chamber of Commerce and of course Mr. Lihou and his good lady wife.
The problem lies in the fact that both of Lihou and Shaver work for TC Media and there’s an election going on.    While writing opinion pieces are always fair dinkum there is a certain onus on news to be truthful.  Omission of the truth is considered lying, and of course it’s against most of the tenets of journalism to lie to the public.
Also, in a Democracy journalists have an actual responsibility to inform the public so that a true and proper decision can be made during elections and real Democracy be practiced.
While every outlet, including this one, has its bias, surely the lengths and degree that TC media is leaping to in Cornwall is not accepted by reasonable people?
Wednesday was the first election event for all candidates.    I attended as it was about the arts, and I’m one of the actual few artists running for office.  I define artist as someone that actually has been paid or achieved a certain level in the performance of their art.
I answered more questions than any candidate that night.  I scored quite a few points; but in Mr. Lihou’s coverage, he was in attendance, nary a word was mentioned about my attendance or performance.   In his piece before the event he mentioned one candidate for mayor but lopped me in with the list of those for council.
Mr. Lihou also took this picture the night my charter rights were violated and the mayor had me removed by police because he didn’t like my t shirt.
gilcig removed from city council published by seaway news feb 10 2014
(photo: Seaway News)
Mr. Lihou didn’t run that photo of a CERT officer in action.   Reading Todd’s coverage itself shows his true bias   LINK The story, dated on the 25th of February (the photo is dated the 10th)
Could you imagine any other TC media outlet covering this story and without using the photo above?  That’s the kind of photo that’s money in the bank for editors.
The man, who operates a website in Cornwall that often posts items related to community events, was asked by Mayor Bob Kilger to change his t-shirt which contained what the mayor felt was an offensive image. His likeness was, apparently, featured on a milk carton.
Does that sound journalistic?  While I get that Todd may not like myself or CFN, we have been an online newspaper since 2009 and the most read in this market since 2011.   A man?  If he knew the person why would he write “The man” instead of Jamie Gilcig?
He then  ran an editorial.

A man (I refuse to publish his name for a couple of reasons: one, you already know who he is and two, I’m not about to give him any more publicity than he can conjure on his own) who operates a website was wearing what Mayor Bob Kilger deemed an offensive t-shirt.

It contained a likeness of the mayor on a milk carton – not sure I understand the symbolism, but Kilger took it to heart and offered the man a choice: change or get out.

The man said no way, and had to be ejected from the chambers with a little help from the police. (By the way, hat tip to the cops for getting there in less than a minute – wow!).


Mr. Lihou continued:

I’m not here to suggest the posts I’ve read are accurate or not – but what is lacking is a deep sense of professionalism.


Irony is that what professional journalist wouldn’t ask how seven police officers, including at least one CERT officer were able to be on the second floor of a building, during a snow storm, in less than a minute without being wet, or wearing winter wear?  Or did Mr. Lihou not notice in his own words that it’s not up to the mayor to define the Charter of Rights and Freedoms that greater minds did or that a responsible journalist would actually call Mayor Kilger out for the violation of those rights?

I encountered the website operator Monday night, and used language I’m not particularly proud of –  but still stand by – in letting him know what I thought about the unwarranted criticism we received. It was probably just as unprofessional as the t-shirt, maybe more, but in the heat of the moment I felt justified in standing up to him

Yes, Mr. Lihou, outside of the council chamber, with children present, whipped out a f bomb laced diatribe at yours truly.  He just let loose.

Now when Claude McIntosh or myself write “Opinion” it’s one thing.  When Todd does as well that’s fine too; but there seems to be a certain personal attack quality by him and Mr. Shaver directed at myself and CFN that clearly is spilling into “news coverage” and the election process.

And that’s about as toxic to Democracy as well…..defacing the poppy who many consider the equivalent to defacing our flag.

Obviously Mr. Brownell, Mr. Shaver, and Mr. Lihou are not defenders of our proud heritage and those that serve us protecting our Canadian Democracy.

The election is October 27th.  Hopefully Cornwall voters can survive this black stain that these gentlemen have marred our town with.

The people will have their say and perhaps one of the reasons TC has just downsized in Cornwall, giving up most of their rented space on 2nd street after closing 20 weeklies in their chain is because more of the public read and trust CFN than those forced to get the Seaway News just to get their flyers.

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