Maclean's Gets Racier

Check out the controversial cover on Maclean's. It will piss off two different sets of people at the same time. What an accomplishment. And Kenneth Whyte -- new editor, though too busy juggling people in and out of his door to write editorials -- is certainly going to get what he wants: people talking about his magazine. No sooner had I recovered from the shock of the cover -- which I think says what it says well -- when I saw Antonia Zerbisias column on the changes at Maclean's. Ahhh...that's what's going on. I was pleased to see Barbara Amiel back in her rightful place. I don't know why she was tossed so unceremoniously in the first place (A digression: why do newspapers and magazines treat long-time employees and by extension their readers so shabbily by allowing very few of them to write a farewell column? There's almost a shameful quality around their firing. If you feel justified in firing said person, then stop treating it like it should be swept under the rug and let your readers know.) I don't know or remember the other newbies well enough to comment on them, but readers of Zerbisias' blog are none too pleased.

I do like the fact Maclean's is looking at old issues in a taboo way. Shaking up the lemming-like way we all look at, for example, Wal-Mart or the insidious slide of women back into just being meat (how's that any different from the way fundamentalist Muslim men view women -- some prefer their meat covered up, others exposed) is a good thing. I agree with one commenter, Tony Sarabia, who wrote, "Canadians...are, in fact, a moderate, intelligent, peaceful people." It's become rather obvious in the blogging world just how different we are in debating styles from Americans, especially broadcasters, in that way. But I don't think Maclean's has degenerated into a non-thinking confrontational style. It's confrontational, yes, but in a way to generate thought, not crush it.

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