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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

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    Free press doesn’t mean an unbiased press

    While I agree with Professor Zheng’s letter Tuesday that news reporting should be balanced and unbiased in regard to China (“”Call for China fairness overdue””), I take issue with his philosophy of a free press. He states that a free press requires presenting ideas in a “”fair, unbiased, impartial and respectful”” manner. No, it does not. A free press means that citizens have the right to say all sorts of unfair, biased, partial and disrespectful things. It’s not a perfect system, and a lot of very bad stuff gets published, but it’s superior to a system where a person can write a fair and respectful opinion and still face the threat of incarceration, exile or worse because a party censor or other government bureaucrat took offence.

    Tom Gelsinon
    Program Coordinator, Mexican American studies and Research Center


    Abortion art dissociates act from immorality

    Regarding Michael Hathaway’s opinion (“”Why we should embrace abortion art,”” Tuesday): While many readers may find it easy to agree with Mr. Hathaway’s closing statement that we must “”confront the issue behind (the image of Aliza Shvarts’ senior art project),”” it is also easy to expose the weak, contradictory and circular arguments Mr. Hathaway presents to come to his opinion that we should “”embrace abortion art”” in order to confront the underlying issue. The issue at stake, however, goes beyond Mr. Hathaway’s article and can be clarified rather simply. While the exact motivations that drove Shvarts to document her abuse of human life may not be clear, it is just as obvious that no end can justify the means she chose. As abstract and vague as art may have become in our postmodern age, no communicative goal within the confines of art can justify the manipulation of other human beings’ lives. Allowing her “”art”” will only serve to legitimize her deplorable actions. One of the things that becomes clear from Mr. Hathaway’s article is the sad fact that many people actually do display a “”see no evil”” attitude in the abortion debate, by ignoring the moral injustice inherent in the act of an abortion. To claim that abortion is a “”morally neutral act”” is simply unfounded. Even the most vocal, serious pro-choice advocates recognize the moral dilemma surrounding the act of abortion, but choose to justify it in a quasi-utilitarian fashion. I would like to believe that the majority of people at an institution of higher education would be capable of “”confronting the underlying issue”” directly, without the need of permitting Ms. Shvarts’ sick project to be publicly displayed or even accepted as “”art.”” It is precisely by allowing such a depiction that we actually dissociate the act from its immediate immorality and allow it to become socially acceptable like other depictions of violence and abuse.

    Alex Holznienkemper
    German studies graduate student

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