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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat



    Columnist’s suggestions don’t solve lack of substance

    In her Oct. 13 column (“”Campaign ads need to step it up a notch””), Andi Berlin’s use of sarcasm is a good tool to add variety to her writing. However, that sarcasm shouldn’t be used as a crutch, a cane and Dr. Scholl’s slip-in all rolled into one. Berlin’s “”solutions”” for the fact-stretching, aesthetically unpleasing campaign ads amount to turning them into mainstream, Sunday football, visually stimulating but substance-less 30-second popularity spots.

    My first picky remark is about her claim that commercials have to compete with shows like “”Gossip Girl.”” Commercials don’t compete with these shows, but they are made to complement the target audience of the program. Why are there so many beer commercials on ESPN? Instead of yielding to pop culture interests, campaign ads should uphold standards of journalism above the mainstream. Her assertion that the Gabrielle Giffords campaign should do more to highlight her attractiveness will only lend more power to the campaign theory of glitz and glam over substance.

    In the same article, Berlin also complains about campaign ads “”showering them (viewers) with pretension.”” A synonym for pretension is vain, which can mean empty or valueless. So campaign ads should do more to hype up “”looking good,”” but they need to stop showering viewers with empty images and claims? Besides the obvious conflicting claims, the main problem with this article is what it doesn’t contain: an actual solution for the lack of substance in campaign ads.

    Campaign ads change drastically as political events shift the focus from issue to issue, often erratically. That means most ads are completed quickly to capitalize on the current political climate. A real solution would ideally involve accountability for what campaigns choose to air. Although an ad may be pulled, the damage is done once viewers see it. The ever-changing ad cycle means that regulation must entail prompt analysis and disclosure of factual errors. This system would mirror that of print newspapers in which retractions and clarifications would be the responsibility of the offending party. In order to change the unreliable campaign ad atmosphere, politicians must be hit where they feel it the most: their wallets.

    Daniel Sotelo
    political science junior

    If we embrace gay marriage, why not accept polygamy?

    Why does our nation refuse to acknowledge the loving relationships that can exist in polygamous marriage? It is a practice held very dearly to significant populations around the world. Though The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ceased its practice in 1890, several small break-off groups continue in plural marriage and defend it ardently, as well as other unknown religious groups. Many Muslim nations openly accept it as a legal and fulfilling way of life. Even among the rest of society, the same relationships often exist, the only difference being the lack of any marriage contract. Many engage in multiple intimate relationships with full consent from all involved, so why disallow the actual commitment that actually comes with marriage? Why is this illegal in the land of the free?

    The first argument I would expect to hear is that it is demeaning to women, but not all see it that way. Many women have defended the practice in past and present years. And if all adults, male and female, consent to a loving marriage that simply involves more than one spouse, why should the government interfere? And bear in mind that I am not merely referring to polygyny, the act of taking more than one wife, but also to polyandry, the taking of more than one husband, giving women just as much opportunity to be the object of multiple affections. Polyandry has been practiced in societies in the past and even the present in such locations as Tibet. Both forms of polygamy should be equally allowed here to ensure no preferential treatment.

    Perhaps you may say that marriage is intended to promote fidelity, and having more than one sexual partner is promiscuous by nature, whether within or without the contract of marriage. While certainly true without such a contract, many proponents argue that it actually promotes fidelity in marriage, reducing the number of extramarital affairs and instead allowing multiple sexual outlets in a mutual, loving and, if legalized, acceptable manner.

    Simply because a majority of United States citizens do not engage in this alternative lifestyle does not make it less valid. Only bigotry and discrimination prevent its acceptance as a legitimate form of marriage. Or is it possible that our definition of what is worthy of being called marriage is far more complicated than most here are willing to admit?

    Jonathan Rutherford
    psychology senior

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