Since I began studying at CSU, I have chosen to not read The
Collegian for the same reasons that I don’t watch many television
channels or listen to some radio shows and music – if the content
of some media form is offensive to me, I do not have to read, watch
or listen to it.
However, recent events on campus and ads and articles in The
Collegian have been brought to my attention that disturb me. The
safety of young college students, women, faculty and staff, and the
community can be affected by the behavior of people influenced by
media. I may not read The Collegian articles that have explicit
content or photographs, as have been recently found in the paper,
but I can be affected by people who are learning from many media
outlets that it is acceptable to be disrespectful toward women, to
objectify the female body and to act out sexually toward others, as
evidenced by the numbers of cases of sexual assault to which the
CSU Police Department responds.
I find it ironic that the same day an article describing, quite
explicitly, what a guest sexologist had to say, The Collegian
reported on the rather high incidence of sexual assault on our
The ads for the sexologist’s visit featured a drawing of an
intimate act between a man and woman. The article describing the
talk was filled with information on “exploring new sexual avenues.”
The next day had a photograph of an almost nude Paris Hilton.
Detective Eric Lintz of CSUPD says that “garbage in – garbage
out” applies to the influence of explicit media and other sources,
for example MTV programs and Internet pornography, on young people
today. The pervasive sexual messages in today’s culture “(have)
definitely affected this generation,” said Lintz.
CSU is an academic institution, and people from countries around
the world come here to study to better their lives, their families
and their communities. I believe more caution and editorial
responsibility concerning the pictures and content in ads and
articles would still allow The Collegian to report on events on
campus and in the world and receive the business advertising money
needed to run the paper without compromising decency and possibly
the safety of students, faculty and staff.
According to Lintz, “The Collegian, as a media outlet, has a
responsibility to help promote safety in the CSU community and Fort
Collins. The Collegian should think about the audience and do the
Perhaps racy ads, overtly sexual article content and obscene
photographs appeals to some of The Collegian’s reading audience,
but propriety and safety, I hope, appeal to many others.