Urban Life

 
 

Eugene Kane has become one of Milwaukee’s most controversial columnists.


And he embraces the title.


“I get a lot of phone calls, tweets and emails, but if the comments are rude, then I will ignore them, unless they want to have an online discussion,” said Kane, who began working for the old Milwaukee Journal 30 years ago and continues writing for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.


“This weekend, I participated in one [online discussion] and about 20 readers got to ask me questions, and I answered them all.”


Kane has turned to Twitter to also answer his followers and critics.


“If readers tweet me, I am more likely to dialogue with them by twitter then respond to their emails,” he said.


Kane believes it takes a lot to be an opinion writer. To start, you have to have strong views about certain stories that catch readers’ attention.


“I tackle both national and local issues, but for the issues that are national and dealing with race and ethics, I try to put it in perspective of the local Milwaukee area level,” said Kane.


Opinion writers need to be passionate.


“Passion involves getting mad and angry about the things that interest you.  You have to rely on the editor to tell you when it’s too much, to keep from getting too emotionally involved,” Kane said.


Kane uses emotion in his columns to connect a typical neighborhood in Milwaukee to the whole city and the country.


“I like opinion columns and my interests have always been about social issues.”


“At first, I started with general assignments and reporting around the Milwaukee area,” Kane said. “I have mostly been a column writer and I freelanced in college.”


Shortly after, Kane began writing columns for the Journal. 


“To me, columns are a very creative way to write and tell people about issues,” said Kane. “Columns are a very distinctive voice compared to a regular newspaper article.”


Since Kane began at the Journal, technology has drastically changed. In the beginning, all he had was a typewriter. Now, he has the world at his fingertips with social media, utilizing his Facebook page and Twitter account to communicate with readers. He uses this to his advantage.


“Usually, I give [readers] my link to my URL, Kane’s Column, but sometimes, I give the Twitter followers a burst of news or emotion,” Kane said.


With social media, Kane can publish his column to not only the thousands who read his work, but also for the millions who have either Facebook or Twitter.


Kane gives no indication of slacking off from his intensity.


“To be a journalist, you have to keep the passion that you had when you started,” Kane said. | UV

 

Kane’s opinion: be passionate| Brendan Ploen

“I tackle both national and local issues, but for the issues that are national and dealing with race and ethics, I try to put it in perspective of the local Milwaukee area level.” ~ Kane

Eugene Kane - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Columnist

Photo By | Jasmine Wright