The Medium holds first amendment sacrosanct
In comedy, sometimes you run something up the flagpole and not everyone salutes it. This seems to be the case of a joke that ran in the April 7 issue of The Medium, which was a comedic and highly exaggerated correlation between the hazing rituals of fraternities and policies carried out by the German government during the Holocaust. Regarding jokes about the Holocaust, the author of the April 14 column "Medium's mockery uncalled for" claims "obviously the new group of writers has forgotten that their predecessors already made this mistake," referring to a cartoon which ran in the Springfest issue of 2004, where a Jewish person was shown being knocked into an oven in carnival game style. Nothing could be farther from the truth. We know very well the mistakes of the previous editorial staff; we have learned from them and now we move forward. The writer also seems to be making a feeble attempt at correlating a single joke in one article designed to elicit laughter to a cartoon, which was calculated to shock and appall people into laughing.
The writer goes on to say that The Medium "is comprised primarily of racist, sexist and homophobic jokes … broken up by the occasional pornographic image" and that a substantial portion of our jokes surround "fart humor." I am quite confident in saying that it is a rare instance indeed that a fart joke will appear in The Medium. Perhaps if the writer were more informed on the subject — for example, if he had picked up an issue of The Medium within the past two years — he would have seen that the paper no longer prints tasteless shock humor with the only goal being repulsion. This pretention is actually quite common across the University, as many students respond to my being the business manager of The Medium with "Isn't that the paper that prints all those disgusting porn pictures?" Simply picking up a recent issue of our paper will reveal that we no longer showcase offensive shock humor; our comedy now centers primarily on topical and satirical humor concerning the University and the country. Additionally, in comments submitted to us by the personals, many people held that the author's column regarding the paper was uninformed, biased and generally uncalled for.
In further attacking the character of our editorial staff, the writer makes us out to look like monsters who "[work] tirelessly to undermine the credibility, honor and good name that the University has built for itself." Again, sir, I say you are wrong. The only thing that the staff of The Medium works tirelessly toward is the goal of making the students of the University laugh, all the while upholding the principles set forth by the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States. There are those who believe the First Amendment to be sacrosanct, with the exception being cases where somebody's feelings are hurt. In this instance they can demonize the First Amendment and make it look like a scourge on society. You can have your right to free speech, but only if you say things that we say are okay to say. This does not sound very free to me. We are of the belief that the First Amendment is sacrosanct, and that is final.
Gary Klimowicz is a Rutgers College senior majoring in criminal justice. He is also the business manager of The Medium.