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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (April 8, 1996)
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
J. Christopher Ha in.Editor, 472-1766
Doug Kouma.Managing Editor
Doug Peters.Opinion Page Editor
Sarah Scalet .Associate News Editor
Matt Waite...Associate News Editor
Michelle Garner...Wire Editor
Under the skin
Playboy OK with a dose of reality
In case you’ve ignored the letters to the editor section for the last
\ week, we thought you might like to know that Playboy magazine is
getting ready to pay another visit to Lincoln.
Every year, the magazine runs a pictorial featuring women from
one of the country’s college conferences. This year: the Big 12.
The impending visit became a topic of conversation after Play
boy placed an advertisement in the Daily Nebraskan, announcing
its search for UNL women to appear in the issue.
Soon after, the predictable arguments began to surface that Play
boy is an evil, exploitative enemy of women.
Opponents of the magazine paint the picture of Playboy as a
magazine portraying women in a demeaning light — a magazine
that is chock full of lewd, pornographic images.
In truth, the content of Playboy magazine is largely editorial.
Playboy magazine has served as a forum for some of this country’s
most famous writers. “Roots” author Alex Haley was a regular con
tributor before his death.
In the most recent issue, pictorials accounted for 32 pages; ar
ticles, ads and other assorted material made up the remaining 142
What’s more, the photographs of women in Playboy magazine
arc no more graphic than what a 17-year-old can sec in many R
rated movies and art galleries.
But that alone, of course, doesn’t necessarily make it OK.
Part of what docs make it OK is that the U.S. Constitution says it
is OK. Saying you don’t like Playboy and saying it shouldn’t exist
are two completely different things.
Another part of what makes Playboy OK comes from the human
ability to reason. Almost every form of advertising or entertain
ment plays upon some part of human nature—whether it is women
huddling together to gawk at a shirtlcss construction worker in a
diet Coke ad or an action-adventure movie filled with guns and
We don’t deny that these forms of entertainment play upon our
baser instincts. Instead, we require rational people of both sexes to
distinguish between the fantasy on the screen or in a magazine and
the reality of their own lives.
And most of us do — that’s why it’s OK.
Staff editorials represent the official
policy of the Spring 1996 Daily Ne
braskan. Policy is set by the Daily
Nebraskan Editorial Board. Editorials
do not necessarily reflect the views of
the university, its employees, the stu
dents or the NU Board of Regents.
Editorial columns represent the opin
ion of the author. The regents publish
the Daily Nebraskan. They establish
the UNL Publications Board to super
vise the daily production of the paper.
According to policy set by the regents,
responsibility for the editorial content
of the newspaper lies solely in the
hands of its students.
The Daily Nebraskan welcomes brief letters to the
editor from all readers and interested others. Letters
will be selected for publication on the basis of clarity,
originality, timeliness and space available. The Daily
Nebraskan retains the right to edit or reject all material
submitted. Readers also are welcome to submit mate
rial as guest opinions. The editor decides whether
material should run as a guest opinion. Letters and
guest opinions sent to the newspaper become the
property of the Daily Nebraskan and cannot be re
turned. Anonymous submissions will not be pub
lished. Letters should include the author’s name, year
in school, major and group affiliation, if any. Re
quests to withhold names will not be granted. Submit
material to: Daily Nebraskan, 34 Nebraska Union,
1400 R St. Lincoln, Neb. 68588-0448.
" H S>LI
I have been observing the debate
oyer the recent development in the
Lincoln Catholic Church and, not
being Catholic, there is something I
There was a time when the
Catholic Church (among others) felt
it was proper to bum people who
disagreed with the church. At some
point, reform occurred within the
church, and today that no longer
“Reform” came from within the
church by individuals who didn’t
agree with the idea of burning
This meant that there were
Catholics who disagreed with
Catholic teaching, and eventually,
the whole church came to agree with
their new ideas.
Why arc so many people certain
that the people who belong to the
banned groups don’t have ideas that
will eventually be accepted? If there
is popular condemnation of older
church policies, isn’t it possible that
some current policies need reform?
Corey A. Becker
The recent letters by many people
stating that the teachings and
practices of the Catholic Church
haven’t changed since its origins
have aroused my attention. While I
am not Catholic, (I don’t practice
any organized religion.) I am
something of a student of the
religions of the world, Catholicism
I have been taught several
instances when the Catholic Church
has changed its views or practices.
Three come to mind right off. The
first is the change from conducting
the mass exclusively in Latin to
conducting the mass in the language
of the people as it is today. Latin
was declared to be the official
language of the church (the language
in which all masses were to be
conducted) at the Council of Trent,
at which other changes (number of
sacraments, the nature of the
cucharist) were made in Catholic
doctrine. They were made in
response to the Protestant movement
of the time, showing that the church
does react to the times that it exists
The next change occurred
officially during Vatican II in the
mid-1960s, when the Church no
longer blamed the Jewish people for
the death of Jesus. The final change
is that in Vatican I, the concept of
the infallibility of the Pope on moral
issues and matters of faith. While the
actual change is that the Pope is
infallible and always should have
been considered that way, it is still a
change in the official stance of the
D. Nathan Hood
Recently, the notice that Playboy
wanted to revisit UNL and photo
graph college students of the Big 12
has caused much controversy about
the potential exploitation ofwdiiVen.
There have been many rebuttals
about this and that, the pornography
issues, ethics, and more, but I would
like to point out a few things.
First of all, with all of the
“magazines” of this type on the
market, Playboy is known as the
classiest of all. Consequently, it has
the largest reader base in the
country. Playboy also has been
known to launch careers of models
and other ladies looking for their
break. For example, Vanna White’s
career with Wheel of Fortune
skyrocketed after her appearance in
Playboy. Madonna tripled her media
exposure after her appearance. The
names go on and on, and the reason
for it lies in the long history of
Also, Playboy is not purely a
“skin” magazine. The artieles in the
magazine are provocative, in forma
live and flat out make you think.
They cover a wide variety of topics,
from business to trends to money to
social and dating advice from
licensed therapists. Let’s not
condemn a magazine for one aspect
we don’t like. We wouldn’t leave a
football game because the Huskers
blew one set of downs.
Finally, I would like to know
what the response would be from the
ladies if Playgirl Magazine were to
come to town. Would they still think
that there were people being
exploited? Or would that issue be
the biggest selling issue, as the
“Girls of the Big Eight” was?
- Send your brief letters to:
Daily Nebraskan, 34
111 C7 Nebraska Union, 1400 R St.,
_ Lincoln, Neb. 68588, or Fax
TV T 1 1 to (402)472-1761, or email
l^l C |/”0 cletters @ unlinfo.unl.edu.>
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