1999-11-27 / Columnists

From The G-Man:

Sorry Isn't Enough; G-Man Says Bye!

By Gary Toms

Last week I wrote an article entitled "In Memory of "El Viejo". In that article I viciously attacked a man that I, and others, thought was responsible for an old man’s death. I deeply regret writing the article. It turns out that the sources who provided me with the so called information were grossly inaccurate in their account of the situation.

I learned about my error from the best possible source. I found myself face to face with the man I ripped to shreds in the last issue. There were no fistfights or anything close to that because it was an arranged meeting. The person who arranged this union felt I needed to know this man’s version of what happened, and I wanted to listen.

During the entire conversation with this man, I felt he was nothing more than a gentle soul. At no point did he raise his voice or act in a threatening manner. He was really quite consoling, and that just made matters worse for me. He stated that he had not read the scathing article I’d written about him, and I can only hope that he believed me when I told him how sorry I was for assassinating his character. The pen is indeed mightier than the sword, and last week, I destroyed this man with poison ink.

I am having an extremely difficult time dealing with what has occurred. It is on my mind each day and it will be for a very long time. If all of you could have had the opportunity to speak to this man, you would understand how I feel. It is because of my article that he is labeled a murderer, an S.O.B., an insensitive bastard and no good. He has even had people threaten his life and the lives of those in his family. How the hell can I ever live with that? It’s one thing when I destroy people who deserve it, like political "puppets" or people who have no respect for others, but to hurt those who have done nothing wrong is not why I started writing this column.

It is clearly understood why no charges were filed. He did nothing wrong, and the police felt the same. As a matter of fact, the man that I attacked was the one who called the ambulance, and the man did not die on the pavement, as I was lead to believe. He actually died at the hospital when doctors were fighting to save him.

The information I received was just plain f….d up! However, I still hold myself responsible for the pain inflicted upon this innocent man. In a series of painful events in my life, recently, this was the proverbial icing on the cake.

I cannot continue to write for this publication, with a clear conscious, knowing what I have done. I pride myself on being different from other writers by not attacking people just for the sake of a headline or good story. I wrote this column based on elements that seem to be missing from many of the large newspapers: honesty, integrity and compassion. Last week, none of those elements were present. I disappointed an innocent man, many fans and supporters and most of all myself.

I do not know what the future holds for me at this point, but I leave The Wave knowing that perhaps one day I will write again. Maybe I’ll finally sell one of my scripts or television show ideas. For those of you who may be wondering, I was not fired from The Wave! This is a personal decision, and I feel it is the only way that I can come to terms with what I have done and the pain that I have caused. I wholeheartedly apologize to all of those involved.

I will be forever grateful for the opportunity The Wave gave me, when other papers and editors pissed on me. With John McLoughlin at the helm, I believe the paper is in good hands.

To all the staff, and Leon especially, thank you for the support. To all of my fans and loyal readers, you guys, and gals, were simply the best! To those of you dancing and celebrating my sudden departure, be careful not to trip and fall.

Appropriately enough, the final "Jacky" award goes to me. It’s a weeping jackass surrounded by a bunch of broken pens. Goodbye, good life and God bless.

(Editor's note: The Wave has spoken with the G-Man and has asked him to reconsider his decision. The service he provides for the community through his column is one The Wave believes to be essential. We at the paper hope he will take a few weeks off, relax and get back to business. And remember to err is human, to forgive is divine.)

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