The top half of the op ed page was devoted to student opinion. That Chang, in the words of the page 1 article, wanted a spirit-focused Lance to include "a page dedicated to student opinions to replace the page currently dedicated to student opinions" is as equally indicative of Chang's general ignorance of The Lance's operation as it is indicative of the student body's ignorance of what a newspaper's "op ed" section was about. This became evident in 1989 during something I call "the lug-a-mug" incident.
Back about 1989 some U of W club called the UW Environmental Awareness Organization introduced the Lug-A-Mug program. Instead of buying your coffee in Styrofoam they encouraged you to buy a plastic, reusable mug. Right. No big thang. Anyway, the top half of The Lance's op ed section was reserved for student opinion. Any student could submit a longer opinion piece and we'd run it there. It was a rare week we actually got something from an actual student who was not on staff. This is a world where hot topics like free trade, apartheid, the cold war, and acid rain were tearing up society. But we never heard a thing about any of this stuff from a student. Suddenly, after we ran a little puff piece in the news section about the Lug-A-Mug program, we started getting inundated with these anti Lug-A-Mug pieces from students for the op ed section. For about four straight issues we ran these anti Lug-A-Mug op eds. Finally, the exasperated head of the Lug-A-Mug program came up to The Lance's offices. She cornered the editor, The Legendary Kevin Johnson, and demanded to know what the hell The Lance had against the Lug-A-Mug program.
Kevin explained that The Lance had nothing against the program. He pointed out to her that every desk in The Lance had a lug-a-mug. It's just that the op ed section is for student opinion and for whatever bizarre reason, people had something to say about lug-a-mugs.
Letters to the Editor
Letters to the editor were generally subtitled with one or two words. It was considered high art if every letter on the page could be appropriately subtitled with a similar word or some kind of chain of homonyms. We had two fairly hard policies about the letters to the editor.
All stuff copyright 1990-2002 TransMetaPhysical Heresies R Us
(a subdivision of The Karl Mamer and Terry Brown Foundation for Creative Penury)
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