Conversations With a CalCoastNews Reader

Aaron Ochs
8 min readApr 18, 2020

WARNING: This is one of my longer columns. Read only if you’re bored.

Reddit is an interesting place. There are a number of communities, or “subreddits,” where people can talk about a number of interests and hobbies. It’s rather limitless. One can easily go down the rabbit hole and find a community that appeals to their interests. Subreddits can also be categorized by city, town, region and state. Naturally, there is a San Luis Obispo subreddit. On there, people are trying to wrap their heads around the various controversies surrounding District 3 Supervisor Adam Hill.

As someone who documented many of these controversies in my book, I’ve weighed in. Because I’ve been staying at home and not having more opportunities to spend my time elsewhere, I’ve weighed in more frequently. While I’ve had no trouble fielding questions and providing some insights, I’ve garnered a few detractors, most of whom are anonymous trolls itching for a virtual confrontation.

Their beats are typical and predictable. One person attacked me personally, feeling compelled to compare me to Hill while cherry-picking various allegations by CalCoastNews and stating them as fact. But when I linked to comments they made on CalCoastNews’ site about them being a muckracking publication under the same pseudonym, they absurdly accused me of “stalking” them. I figured that was the perfect and natural end to our conversation.

But there was another reddit user who reached out to me privately. At first, they called me a “piece of shit” for “supporting” Hill. Since I had nothing else to do at that moment, I pushed past their invective and had a discussion that proved to be revealing.

I’ve written at length about the misconceptions and false narratives CalCoastNews has made about me personally, but rarely do I have a chance to hear from a CalCoastNews supporter who gives me insight into their thought process and how they digest their “reporting.”

This reddit user, a young Republican, considers Supervisor Hill to be the epitome of big liberal government gone awry. Because of his behavioral issues, his tendency to insult constituents from his County email, and his Jersey-style approach to dealing with “reporters,” this reader was more inclined believe in the various…

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Aaron Ochs

Author, artist, advocate and entrepreneur from Morro Bay, California.