March 6, 2010

Know it when you see it

A reader asks whether the Badger Herald would publish a paid advertisement containing a hyperlink to a "porn site":
Well, since that would fall under the "obscene" category, then no, it wouldn't be run. — Kevin Bargnes, chairman, BH Board of Directors
obscene adj 1 : REPULSIVE 2 : deeply offensive to morality or decency — Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary

Why mightn't that include Holocaust denial? "[Especially that] designed to incite lust or depravity," M-W's Collegiate definition number 2 goes on. Especially, but not exclusively.

It needn't offend your morality or decency, but it does a substantial constituent of the polity which, under the circumstances (a literal and very recent genocide), is entitled to a degree of deference.

Holocaust "revisionist" Bradley Smith's advertisement, complete with a link to his own website, currently appears on every single page of the Badger Herald's online edition. This is his patronizing plea:
Help me help student journalists allow these questions to be asked in the pages of their newspapers.
Such passive selflessness ... here, let me fetch you a tissue.
Your contribution of $25 a month will help me place more ads, and bigger ads, in more student newspapers.
Like I said, the Badger Herald got itself played like a cheap fiddle.

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