To put it as mildly as possible, I was extremely disappointed when I saw the ethnic slur used by Lee Onishuk in a May 9 letter to the editor. As this is the first time I’ve observed the Missoulian giving space to a form of hate speech, I’m going to assume this just slipped by.
In times of war or international conflict we, as a nation, have historically fallen into an unfortunate place of applying derogatory and dehumanizing terms to an enemy. In the Iraq War it was “t***l h**d," during the Vietnam War, “g**k," and in World War II, "k***t." A human foible, perhaps; nevertheless, terms that should not be used by anyone claiming to be a member of a civilized and tolerant community.
Lee Onishuk, you owe the citizens of Missoula an apology; especially those of German descent. Sadly, I don’t expect one will be forthcoming. But I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you’ll mature a bit and avoid hurtful terminology in the future.
To the editors of the Missoulian, please give a tune up to your filters for ethnic slurs and other hate speech as you consider letters for publication. Thank you.