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To those involved in (a) the decision to run the article covering the recent tragic fire in Dupont Circle (Fire, 1/24) and (b) the fashion in which your paper went about covering this event, I would like to express my disappointment and disgust with your choices and journalistic skills.
The article managed to both embarrass me as a regular reader of your periodical and also insult me as a coworker of the late Chris Duncan.
Chris was an employee of one of Washington’s most well-known and successful businesses, the DC Improv. He was a guy whom thousands and thousands of area residents, not to mention all the tourists who have attended shows at the Improv, probably conversed with on
a friendly level. The article failed to mention this but oddly included the “fact” that his skin “hung like Saran wrap.” What a beautiful and tasteful metaphor to describe the last moments of such a friendly and funny young man.
The article also mentioned the “fact” that a young woman on the scene escaped the fire naked. What bearing on the story this detail has is beyond me, other than that you might be trying to attract readers by using insignificant sensational details of an otherwise important event.
I think you should be ashamed, if you consider yourselves journalists. Please bear in mind that this is coming from someone who makes his living as a writer/performer and uses his free-speech privileges every single day. I am employed by the DC Improv among many other comedy clubs and theaters around the country, and it takes a lot for a journalist, writer, or anyone else making a living in publishing or the arts to offend me, but you have done so.
I implore you to apologize to
the Duncan family as well as to the DC Improv for your callous and insensitive article.
New York City