I can’t help but laugh at the whole “Holy Sheet” situation that’s shaking up Lyndon State College. For those of you who haven’t heard, LSC’s campus newspaper, The Critic, has come under fire in recent weeks because of a controversial “sex advice” column, cleverly titled “Holy Sheet.” Certain members of the school’s faculty have called for not only the removal of the column from the paper, but for the expulsion of the author, Jordan Royer, because the risqué content defames the reputation of the college. Popular amongst students, the column depicts often-graphic description of sexual situations, sprinkled with Royer’s tounge-in-cheek sense of humor.
Now, let me start my rant by saying this: All of you involved in this debacle at LSC are crazy. The author, the whining faculty, the students who think Royer is some sort of misunderstood martyr-crazy. Simply crazy.
First of all, Royer is the LAST person on the planet you should take sex “advice” from. Judging from his sense of humor and style, which is about as lowbrow and completely classless as a wannabee Howard Stern can be, I seriously doubt he’s any sort of wizard between the sheets. Real magicians don’t sell their secrets for free, y’know.
To the professor calling for his expulsion: Lay off! Quit making this into a bigger deal than it is. Because you had to call for an absurd crusade against this guy, he’s getting all sorts of press and support! He’s just a hack trying to pass his work off as artistic freedom, playing the victim of corporate censorship and oppression. You’re feeding his image!
Expel him? Puhhleeze. Get off your high horse and go back to grading papers already.
And to the students, who have even gone as far to create a “Save Holy Sheet” club on Facebook. Come on! I know we’re college students and I know we’re not always known for having the highest quality of social standards, but we’re better than this. The Critic not only represents the school as an institution, it also represents the student body and what it considers “newsworthy.”
As budding journalists, Royer and myself are responsible for playing to our audience. We write what you want to read. If the student body stands together in defense of juvenile “dick-and-fart” jokes, how do you think people, including future employers, are going to view you? Do you want to be viewed as educated and open-minded adults or a bunch of sixth graders who still think the word “boobs” is funny?
Here’s what I would do.
The Critic should pull the column, UNLESS, if Royer MUST write a sex column, why not try to make it a little less sleazy and more informational? No one cares if some chick walked in on you jerkin’ the Gherkin or how you recommend viewing porn. The school paper is not the Penthouse Forum and you are not Sue Johanson, so stop going for shock and maybe try writing something worthwhile. You can obviously turn a phrase when you need to, so why not start applying it to something that matters.
Faculty, leave the guy alone. He doesn’t need to be suspended and he shouldn’t be expelled. That’s a lawsuit in the making. Just roll your eyes and stop reading the paper, or maybe try taking a realistic approach, such as having Royer tone things down a bit. All journalists realize there are just some things you can’t print. We all have to learn to walk the line at one point or another. But we need guidance to keep us on course. The sooner he learns this, the better chances he’ll have for success after college.
Students, raise the bar a bit. We shouldn’t have to dumb down the paper so you’ll read it. If you’re looking for uncensored and unbridled journalism, which I’m totally for, read Playboy or Cosmo or something. The Critic is a school paper with a reputation to maintain. Its reputation could very well determine whether or not people like Royer actually find work after school, so why not try to further his other skills instead allowing him to come off as a dumb frat boy with no standards.
Boundaries are meant to be crossed, but it’s up to us to decide who is worthy enough to cross them. I can say “penis” and “vagina” and joke about it, too.
Does that make me worthy?