Freedom of the Press Is under Attack in Campus Culture Wars

By Anderson, Lisa | Insight on the News, May 3, 1999 | Go to article overview

Freedom of the Press Is under Attack in Campus Culture Wars


Anderson, Lisa, Insight on the News


If America's colleges and universities are the training ground for our national media, they also are the test kitchens of liberal bias, where conservative students still are fighting for a place at the table. Word on the street is that if your name's connected with a conservative newspaper or magazine, you're on a censorship hit list that only is getting longer. Consider the following:

* In its efforts to register as a campus organization, the Village Alternative, New York University's conservative paper, was turned down on grounds of being a duplicate of an already-existing group (a Republican club) -- this despite the fact that the university has six Korean-student organizations, three Asian clubs, several black and Latino clubs and four socialist clubs.

* Cornell University's conservative tabloid, the Cornell Review, ran a nationally syndicated cartoon a couple of years ago that brought charges of racism against the paper even though the cartoon was commissioned by a black minister. Asking "Which one of these kills more blacks?," the choices depicted were the Ku Klux Klan, a neo-Nazi group and a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic. Immediately following its publication, opponents held public burnings of the magazine on campus and blocked traffic -- both against school safety policies. Curiously, school administrators took no action. Some defended the protests and even joined in the harassments.

* Between 2,000 and 3,000 copies of the Georgetown Academy, Georgetown University's right-leaning paper, were stolen last fall in an effort to eradicate its presence on campus. When confronted, one offender explained his act of theft as a "general cleanup of the lobby area." Even more disappointing is the fact that the rest of the campus press chose to ignore the theft and instead printed editorials lambasting the Academy for its decidedly Catholic views.

The latest skirmish in the censorship war is being waged at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass. Freedom magazine, a self-described "open forum" publication in its second year, became the target of student-government efforts to decharter and defund it. …

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