Joking students called on the carpet – The Denver Post
The students, staff, and leadership at Colorado College need to get a clue, a life, and a sense of humor. The students who wrote “The Monthly Bag” were just trying to raise awareness and do a parody of a publication, “The Monthly Rag.”
“The Monthly Rag” is a feminist publication by the feminist and gender studies program at Colorado College had a discussion on feminist pornography, information on gender-bending practices, and a tidbit about a myth involving male castration.
“The Monthly Bag” was the parody publication that discussed chainsaw etiquette, different sexual positions from Men’s Health Magazine, and trivia about a sniper rifle. Staff from Colorado College started removing copies of the “The Monthly Bag” soon after it was published because the received reports that it was threatening.
The two students were hauled before the conduct committee and found to have violated the campus conduct code. In lieu of punishment, they had to hold a forum of the issues raised in the incident. In a letter, the vice president for campus life called the incident, “the juxtaposition of weaponry and sexuality.”
But the issue is that “The Monthly Rag” did the same thing. Adam Kissel of the Foundation for the Individual Rights in Education summarized, “It’s such an obvious double standard. The fact that ‘The Monthly Rag’ mentions male castration alongside an announcement for a feminist porn activist provides the same juxtaposition they’re claiming (‘The Monthly Bag’) violence and sexuality.”
People need to lighten up. It is just plain-and-simple. I remember when I was in college people would develop parody’s of different things and it was quite funny. “The Monthly Rag” was the perfect thing to make fun of and it was done quite well.
To punish them for doing nothing wrong shows the double standard that happens on college campuses. A feminist group sponsored by Colorado College publishes a newsletter that describes feminist pornography and male castration. But a group of two students who publish a newsletter parodying it get hauled before the conduct committee because some people thought it was threatening.
To respond, the President of Colorado College wrote in his blog,
I have been a staunch defender of free speech on this campus since the day I arrived here. I defended it in the face of alumni and community pressures when Hanan Ashrawi spoke on campus. And I will continue to defend it. I defend our students’ right to make their case. But first and foremost, I will always do what I can to maintain the safety of this campus. For without that, we would find our freedom of speech truly at risk.
This is just a cop-out. People should be able to express their feelings and thoughts. There should not be a double-standard. If people are truly threatening someone or a group, then fine. Deal with the issue. But this was neither threatening an individual or a group.
People need to stop over-reacting to things and have sense of humor, especially on college campuses.