Dear Toronto Sun

August 8, 2012

Mr. James Wallace
Toronto Sun
c/o Sun Media Corporation
333 King Street East
Toronto, Ontario
M5A 3X5

Dear Mr. Wallace:

I am long-time, loyal reader of your great publication and the reasons behind my writing you today are two-fold: Firstly, I’d like to congratulate you on your tireless dedication to the sort of journalism that real Torontonians like me need and appreciate, and secondly, I’d like to ask you for a favour.

I read The Sun daily because I appreciate your devotion to unbiased coverage of those politicians currently bringing some much-needed straight talk to city council. Your refusal to join ranks with Toronto’s more liberal media outlets who continue to slander the likes of the brothers Ford and Councillor Mammoliti just because they frequently speak without thinking and don’t kowtow to the wishes of their own constituency is refreshing. Too often Toronto’s other papers lazily use facts and quotes just to paint an unflattering picture of those politicians with whom their beliefs don’t align. The Sun, on the other hand, never lets facts and quotes dictate the story.

Furthermore, you write the stories that matter to real Torontonians like me. Readers of The Sun have come to know and love the sort of tireless real-folk coverage of important issues presented by columnists like Sue-Ann Levy; for example her exposé on the limo drivers that wouldn’t allow her to bring her dog along with her on a trip from the airport, or the hard-hitting piece she did recently exposing the fact that city councillors dare to take summer vacations (which was fantastically supplemented by not only a two-page photo of the empty parking lot at city hall but also a video on The Sun’s website). This is the kind of news I expect from The Sun and it’s the kind of hard journalism that keeps people like me buying your great paper.

I could go on—notably in praise of your continued commitment to exposing both municipal and federal employees for snacking and napping in official vehicles—but in the interest of brevity, I’ll get to my second reason for writing today; namely, to ask for a favour.

You see like many Sun readers, I appreciate the “Coffee Break” section of the paper that affords us a little entertainment and an often much-needed break in the day. I love reading my horoscope and frequently do quite well on the word search; but you see I have a problem with the Sudoku.

About as often as I read The Sun, I try my hand at the Sudoku and, unfortunately, I’m never successful in completing any of the three versions The Sun offers. Try and try as I might, I can never complete the “Vintage,” “Classic” or even “Pacific” versions of this brain-teasing challenge. Normally I wouldn’t write about such a trivial matter, but it occurs to me that these difficult Sudokus are not in keeping with what seems to be The Sun’s overall philosophy.

That is, whereas the majority of the parts of your paper speak to real Torontonians like me (eg, the bubbly, loves-to-shop Sunshine Girl, the attention-grabbing headlines); this difficult Sudoku smacks of the sort of liberal elitism that loyal Sun readers like me detest. It seems almost as if some “intellectual” lefty has seen fit to show-off by putting these near-impossible Sudokus in your paper.

And so I write today to encourage you to think of your readership when you formulate the next “Coffee Break” section of the paper. Consider the kind of loyal reader like me that appreciates the frank talk of Michael Coren, and the faithful Sun reader like me who gets my political commentary from the likes of Salim Mansur and, please, think twice about putting a challenging puzzle in the middle of your otherwise perfectly consistent publication.

Real Torontonians like me don’t read The Sun to challenge ourselves (what is this, homework?); we read it for your no-nonsense presentation of the news as you see it. And so, on behalf of The Sun’s readership, I encourage you to remove the Sudoku at once and replace it with something more in keeping with your publication’s reputation—perhaps just an image of Dalton McGuinty with a mustache drawn on it or, alternatively, an old Marmaduke might suffice.

I’m sure we can all enjoy that.

Thanks for your consideration.


Ben T. Johnson


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