- 01 May 14
The former Irish Times columnist is far from being the bigot some have portrayed him as - but in the age of facebook and twitter there's no hiding from the haters
A couple of weeks ago, when John Waters was so deeply mired in a quagmire of controversy it wasn’t certain that he’d ever manage to clamber out again, I thought of writing a few paragraphs saying that in my experience he wasn’t the hate-crazed zealot that some imagine. But I decided to wait for Hot Press: it was here that we encountered one another more than 30 years ago. His contributions to the magazine, as I recall, were spiral-shaped and always intriguing. You’d wonder where he was headed and then discover he’d arrived.
We soldiered together later at In Dublin and Magill (RIP). It was part of his remit at In Dublin to select Letters to the Editor from the fortnightly bundles of argumentation. Except that he didn’t. Why publish letters attacking ourselves, he asked?
In vain did the late Derek Dunne and myself try to convince him that angry readers should be given a chance to answer back. Maybe, said John. But could they not publish their disagreements somewhere else?