QuickSpec — Fun with Foreign Dignitaries Edition

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  1. hmmm  

    so it takes about the same number of votes to be elected president of estonia as it does to be on ccsc?

  2. Anna  

    The photo on the Barnard old people article is really nice.

  3. the  

    spec web site doesn't look horrible anymore. still needs some work, but not horribly.

  4. score  

    olson: 1 student government: 0

  5. Bwogging the Globe

    Friends, colleagues, distinguished alumni -- in honor of Blue Oyster Cult, it's time for another edition of What Jake Says and What Jake Means.

    "Columbia students aren't exactly known for their thick skins. It seems like any time something remotely un-PC surfaces in the campus dialogue, petitions are signed, letters are written, and protests staged, no matter how innocuous the matter might be."

    Remember last semester, when people formed those human circles on the steps of Low claiming the space was safe? Yeah, that was cool. Spec had lots of neat coverage on it. But personally, you know, that kind of stuff is just over the line.

    "But this is ridiculous."

    Oops. Sports column time.

    "When news surfaced late last week that Columbia's club hockey team was being reprimanded by the administration and the four undergraduate student councils for posting flyers that included the phrase, "stop being a pussy," I wondered if it was a joke (at this point, I should disclose that team president M. Fergus Glynn CC '07 is a friend and former roommate of mine)."

    Pussy. Hrmm. What could the club hockey team honestly mean by that? I think it was a joke. Maybe it wasn't a joke. I'm not sure. And oh, remember when I said last week that I know the football team. Well, I also know the hockey team too. By the way, did you know that the New York Times owns 17% of the Boston Red Sox?

    "I couldn't imagine that, even in an environment as PC-obsessed as Columbia's, people would actually be upset at the use of a phrase that is such a part of modern slang that it's not even censored on basic cable. But apparently, they were."

    Can you believe that they show nudity on Nip/Tuck? I bet at this PC-obsessed school, even a little nipple would call for a mandatory conference on diversity. Goddamnit. I keep forgetting that this is a sports column.

    "The presidents of the four undergraduate student councils co-signed a letter asking the administration to punish the team for its flyers. I know that all four of those people work harder than you or I could ever imagine to make our campus lives better, which is why I can't quite fathom why they'd be wasting their time with a non-issue like this one."

    Those fucking pussies are now beyond ridiculous. I SAID PUSSY!

    "In an article by Melissa Repko that ran in last Friday's Spectator, Student Government Association President Eman Bataineh BC '07 called out the hockey team for flyers that "espouse offensive ideologies"-one wonders how the phrase "stop being a pussy" constitutes an ideology, but that is beside the point."

    Argh. Those pussies are calling my homies out. Jesus. It's just modern slang. Get over it.

    "If offensive ideologies worry Bataineh and ESC President Dan Okin, SEAS '07, so much, then why did they fail to co-sign the full-page ad published in that very same issue that criticized Columbia for inviting whack job Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to espouse his offensive (and legitimately dangerous, as opposed to innocuously humorous) ideologies?"

    Remember last week when the Iranian President's nonvisit was causing such a campus uproar? Well, get this, I'm going to take that nonissue and use it in a column discussing this nonissue. But crap, then my piece becomes a nonissue.

    "And why are the councils up in arms about these flyers, when hundreds of administration-approved t-shirts with the phrase "We eat PUSSYcats like you for breakfast" were handed out by Columbia Special Events at homecoming two years ago? Where was the outrage then?"

    Oh no. The administration is out to get the club team. Can't you tell? Double-edged sword! The varsity football team can say pussy but the club hockey team can't? I am so confused... and outraged.

    "If club teams aren't being made aware of such general rules, then the fault lies with Brian Jines, the director of intramurals and club sports who has done an otherwise tremendous job turning around a program that was in organizational shambles. But after an incident like this one, it's not likely to happen again."

    I think there should be a rule stating that club teams are barred from using the term "pussy" in their recruitment propaganda. As long as no rule exists, then only *the man* is to blame.

    "The fault here, though, lies not with Jines, or the hockey team, or even the four student council presidents who have gotten bent out of shape over a nonissue."

    Whoa. I totally just confused myself.

    "The fault lies with the most exasperating part of attending Columbia University: the excessively PC attitude that seems to lord over every aspect of campus life, an attitude that tells us that if someone somewhere might under some circumstance be somewhat offended by something, then whatever they're offended by needs to be immediately removed and whoever is responsible for it needs to attend mandatory sensitivity training."

    Opinion department, are you reading this? Next semester, More Cowbell is taking over. THERE IS NO FREE SPEECH ON COLUMBIA'S CAMPUS. THERE IS NO FREE SPEECH ON COLUMBIA'S CAMPUS.

    "Just because some people misinterpreted those flyers-the team says the phrase was a play on the Columbia Lion (and knowing several of the players, I believe them)-shouldn't mean that one of Columbia's most successful club sports teams should have to deal with what has now become a very public controversy."

    You guys. Pussy is just a play on Roar-ee the Lion. When the hockey team said "stop being a pussy" what they meant was "stop being a Columbia Lion" -- it makes sense in so many ways. By the way, did I mention that I know the hockey team?

    "Well, it WASN'T offensive, but some people on this campus are unbelievably oversensitive."

    To DRIVE the issue HOME, I'm going to RANDOMLY use big WORDS.

    "I don't know how you get people to change their politically correct ways-if I did, I'd be doing it. But I do know that if Columbia is to truly progress intellectually, the campus community needs to move past this juvenile obsession with political correctness and learn to laugh every once in a while."

    That's it. I'm transferring. You've all gotten to me, you goodie goodie censorship freaks.

  6. Eek  

    "Under the guidelines, an accused student is not permitted to cross-examine witnesses, be present during testimony, or review full transcripts of the proceedings."

    In the interest of protecting potential victims, I can sort of swallow my discomfort about the first two points in that policy. But to deny the accused access to the transcripts of the proceedings seems to fly in the face of anythng we might call a fair system.

    You can be found responsible for a sexual assault without an opportunity to even fully hear the evidence against you. I hope I'm not the only one who's uncomfortable hearing that.

    • Unfortunately...  

      ...that's what makes rape such a horrible and complicated issue, especially date rape where it's usually a grey area. The victims have to to be afraid that they won't be taken seriously or that they'll be ostracized if they are assaulted and come forward, and guys have to be afraid that they'll be wrongly accused for something that's reputation-shattering and nearly impossible to prove or disprove. It's a no-win situation.

  7. Words are important  

    I'm horrified by Olson's flippant acceptance of phrases like "stop being a pussy." Olsen states that such phrases are "innocuously humourous" rather than "dangerous". I beg to differ, and urge him to look up the term "rape culture" on google, or wikipedia or SOMETHING. The fact is, we live in a culture that subtly excuses and promotoes misogyny and violence against women. Cultural ideas like "pussy" meaning someone who is passive and "takes it" promotes violence and oppression.

    • Yes.  

      And gay also means happy. Words change, word meanings change. Some become innocuous from their more hateful roots (pussy), some go from innocuous common useage to slurs to self-identification (queer). You gotta take it how it's meant currently, and I can almost guarantee you that most people who use pussy (myself included and I'm a girl) simply mean it as a more punchy version of wussy, not a rallying cry towards the raping of women.

    • ya'll  

      Are you actually "horrified" by someone using the word "pussy" in that context? Because life for you must be pretty fucking terrible, as there are thousands of people on this campus who say "stop being a pussy" all the time. That must be a lot of horror for you to experience. Here is a horror movie for you.
      Character A: Come on and swim in the water.
      Character B: The water is too cold.
      Character A: Come on, stop being a pussy.

      Sorry, stop being a little bitch.
      Stop being a lily-livered peace of shit.
      Stop being a yellow-bellied scumbag.
      Are any of those terms acceptable?

    • Words are Important  

      Hey y'all this is the same author as the initial "words are important" thing - I wanted to be clear that I think that it is very important to recognize the power of words. That said, I think that the punishment for the hockey team is overly harsh. Their season should certainly not be cut short. There are many other ways to tackle the issue of the offensive flyer without hurting their chances as a team... I can't think how that's productive or conducive to change.

  8. most curses  

    are rooted in either sex, femininity, homosexuality, or defecation. think about it.

  9. good god  

    this is bs. the vagina monologues is offensive and vulgar to me. maybe we should ban performances of that.

    I can't beleive they actually banned them for a semester. Are these administrators idiots?

  10. Crazy Christians

    Actually, now that I've seen the t-shirt (at the ivygate site), it strikes me as something pretty silly to get worked up about. Go on facebook and look up the athletes on varsity teams and gaze into the underage drinking. Should we ban varsity teams because they drink? Personally, I think that's far worse than a rather innocuous t-shirt. (again, now that I've actually seen the shirt, it really does appear to be harmless).

  11. Darfur  

    Our talking about jake olson and the word "pussy" is an example of us elite college students being too big a bunch of pussies to do something about Darfur!

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