Sex Column Causes Editor to Quit; Opinion Column on Equality Stirs Up Trouble

Student editor resigns over sex column: The Towerlight at Towson University is in serious flux because of Lux, the pseudonymous writer behind the sex column “The Bed Post.” Recent columns have divided the editorial team, incensed the  university president, and is causing a media ruckus now that the editor in chief has quit (?!) in the wake of increasing administrative anger.

This Baltimore Sun editorial especially says it all: “There may indeed be little journalistic value in “The Bed Post” . . . Aside from its questionable taste, it violated many of the standards student publications traditionally are supposed to teach aspiring young reporters and editors, such as the necessity of judging what is worthy of coverage as news and a willingness to stand behind the facts in a story. . . . [But] it should have been up to the students to come to those conclusions, not have them dictated by lawmakers and university administrators. The first lessons student journalists in a democracy learn should not have to be how to survive under the censor’s arbitrary fist.”

Student paper answers critics of opinion column: Late last week, a Boston University student sounded off in The Heights about the rise in educational and professional opportunities for the disadvantaged and historically underrepresented.  It was basically a rip on Affirmative Action.  In the student’s words: “The Civil Rights movement is over, and it is time to accept that we cannot artificially accommodate for everyone.” The opinion has spurred a ton of criticism, including some for the Heights itself for publishing such a rancorous piece.

Now, the paper is fighting back, defining its role in starting the conversation: “The Opinions section of The Heights is a public forum for this University. This space is reserved for the thoughts, ideas, and arguments of members of the BC community. With this in mind, the pages of our newspaper can be the epicenter of many discussions, particularly the most difficult, which are generally the most necessary. We will never publish any piece with the intention of offending or inciting bitterness, yet we will never shy away from material that may cause heated dialogue.”

Originally published in College Media Beat

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