By Luke Williamson, Executive Staff
SEWANEE, TN — Last week on the Mountain, a terrible thing befell Sewanee: an opinions piece published by The Sewanee Purple.
Following its publishment online and its promotion on Facebook, random disgruntled adults took to the comments section. Each commenter made some rather astute observations.
One commenter noticed how sex culture bears a strong link with international concerns.
“Wow—these kids are dealing with some real 1st world problems! How will they survive?”
Another commenter utilized level-headed, mature conversational tactics to address her concern with the article to The Purple writers without seeming combative.
“I can’t even. Sheesh. I’ve just returned from a southern college tour, and this kind of crap is not in other school’s newspapers. WAY TO GO, Purple. You’ve just cheapened Sewanee’s reputation further.”
In response to these criticisms, The Sewanee Purple staff held an emergency meeting to address these blaring issues. Editors and contributing writers sat around in a circle, explaining how immediately their minds were changed, how immediately they realized their error.
One contributing writer, Srandom Rtudent (C’20), spoke out in favor of the Facebook comments during this emergency meeting.
“Yeah, I just really admire how these adults handled addressing their concerns with the newspaper,” the student began. “Their comments invited really insightful discourse among the writers here at The Purple, and we’ve all realized just how wrong we were to broadcast an honest depiction of campus life at Sewanee.”
Another unidentified student expanded on this point. “I agree! Moving forward, our only consideration should be maintaining our fragile reputation. Honestly, if even a handful of readers were offended by our content and stopped reading, we might have to halt circulation altogether. It is time to cater exclusively to miscellaneous adults and alumni from now on.”
Contributing writers and editors at The Purple decided that the only imaginable way to move forward was to issue a formal apology. They spent hours drafting it, laboring over word choice and syntax.
“You know, I’m just glad I now realize that double-standards should be perpetuated on Sewanee’s campus,” concluded Rtudent. “The commenters were right — women seeking casual sex are just begging for sexual assault. Men, though, can’t be blamed when they seek casual sex and end up accidentally sexually assaulting someone. They can get easily confused by mixed signals!”
One is appalled. Context, it would appear, is an endangered species, as is perspective.
Barry, I recommend you go find yourself some context and perspective in the previous articles and their discussions.
Beckee Morrison, C’89
Hilarious, and sort of sad. Sewanee belongs both to the past and the present, but the present rules because it is alive and the past is on its way out. Sewanee’s past is full of contradictions; not all of it can be defended. May I suggest to my peers and subsequent classes that they accede gracefully to what the young ones are making of the institution in these troubled times and stop sounding like constipated old grouches?
Today’s present is tomorrow’s past.
They’ll understand, soon enough they’ll be a random old person. (Sooner than they imagine… perhaps next year.)
Stop it with all of the side agendas and focus on your education. This campus is riddled with distraction by all sorts of unrelated agendas that have nothing to do with its true mission. Take your pet cause somewhere else and stop chipping away at a great institution.
By pet cause, you mean the safety of students?
“MA” – Which component of this isn’t part of the Purple writers’ (and student body’s) education? Isn’t learning how to identify and address issues – sometimes with grace, sometimes with disruption – part of any citizen’s education? Campuses are, were, and always will be (I hope) riddled with distraction as people learn about the world they inherit and their place in it. Chipping away at a monolith is what all great sculptors do, and learning by mistake is the best type of education possible.
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