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Editorial: Let's look in the mirror and laugh at ourselves

On Friday afternoon, Hastings High School senior Nick McGrath had one really memorable moment. In front of the whole school, he was crowned homecoming king.

What followed was certainly memorable, too. As he turned to greet his friends on the royalty, his crown fell off. As it tumbled to the ground, he reached for it. In the background, his friends couldn’t contain their laughter.

Star Gazette photographer Chad Richardson was at coronation and snapped several photos of the event, including many while the crown was in mid air. He came back to the office and posted a story on the Star Gazette’s website about the king and queen and he prominently featured the photo of the crown falling off McGrath’s head.

Since then, a couple emails have arrived in his inbox.

“I think the picture should be replaced by a different picture,” one person wrote. “ I personally imagine the young man could be further embarrassed that the crown fell from his head and (he) may be feeling some ridicule from other students.”

Another wrote: “I was wondering if there was a nice picture of Nick McGrath taken before the crown fell off, and, if so, could you please publish that picture. If there was a picture (like that), can you tell me why it wasn’t published?”

On Tuesday afternoon, as this issue was being assembled, we decided to feature that photo on our front page. We wondered, though: What did McGrath think of it? Was he really embarrassed? So, we called him up at school and asked him.

“I love that picture,” he said. “I made it my cover photo on Facebook and it’s got like 200 likes. We were joking about it the other day. If it gets run in the paper, wouldn’t that be the greatest thing ever?”

He then asked: “Is it running in the paper.”

We told him it was.

“That’s awesome,” he said.

What happened at coronation was a funny moment. We captured it and shared it. Now, McGrath and his friends can laugh about it. It’s unfortunate that some of our readers have decided for him that he should be embarrassed by what happened. Sorry, but some of us have the ability to laugh at ourselves. That’s a skill Nick McGrath has apparently already learned.