Volume 93, Issue 82

Tuesday, March 7, 2000


Contrioversial or just inappropriate?

Give up beer, we dare you

Too little, too late from Western

Who wants to learn?

Libs trip up Alliance

What's the difference?

Contrioversial or just inappropriate?

Re: "Cover photo same as pornography" Feb. 17

To the Editor:

I think the main problem with the controversy surrounding the picture of two girls kissing at the Charity Ball is that everyone is arguing different things.

Is it pornography? Did it touch on the homophobic sentiments of Western students? Did it portray the Charity Ball as a drunken stupor instead of a respectable event for a good cause? What is the big problem here anyway?

I understand Brianne Macdonald's shock over the picture, but the problem is she added useless and irrelevant points in her letter that completely defeated her argument, hence the constant letters which attacked her point of view.

Ever since her letter and the ones following it, I've felt it necessary to sum up what I think she was trying to say in a clearer argument.

The picture was not pornography, although it is rather obvious that it was definitely a source of sexual satisfaction for the photographer.

I have no objection to two females kissing, rather than a male and a female or anyone else. I am not homophobic in any way – I have many homosexual friends and coming from an urban area, am oblivious to their sexual orientation.

I don't think anyone, except for the small percentage of homophobic Western students, have a problem with two females kissing, or even someone taking a picture of it. And who can blame the photographer, being a typical sexually driven male of modern society?

So what the hell am I getting at here, anyway? The entire problem is with the person or group who made the decision to print the picture. Have some tact!

It is not the picture itself, but rather the context in which it was printed that is the underlying issue. Who would not feel the same disgust if the front page boasted a similar picture of a male and a female drunkenly sucking face at another University Students' Council event? It completely portrays the same image of a school-sponsored event, whether it be males or females or one of each. Don't we see enough of that on the dance floors of the Ridout?

If the two girls had been kissing because they were partners, because they were actually showing genuine affection, because they were making a statement at a gay pride march, who would care? Who could argue that, without seeming like a homophobic bastard inviting attack? No one.

And perhaps sex sells, but I would like to think that The Gazette's sex surveys and porn reviews would take care of that sales pitch, wouldn't you?

So forget the idea that we are homophobic or prudish and recognize that all we wanted was a respectful review of such an important Western event, not some front page reminder of a cheap drink night at the bar.

Sarah Helppi
Arts I

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