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Opinion opinion@imprint.uwaterloo.

ca Imprint, Friday, July 13, 2007

Tie a yellow ribbon

Apolitically ribbonating K/W meat wagons
Friday, July 13, 2007 — Vol. 30, No. 6

Student Life Centre, Room 1116

University of Waterloo
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Members of the Canadian armed forces must Wait a minute. support of ending domestic violence. It didn’t
be breathing a sigh of relief today. An apolitical decision? You’re a politician, even make it to a vote, because she was told of
Sure, some of the troops may be in constant councillor Whaley. You go to council to conduct the region’s no-public-support policy. However,
Editor-in-chief, Adam McGuire
grave danger or horrifying conditions. But, thanks political business. You’re on taxpayer dollars, sit- that same policy was waived — readily — for
to local municipal governments, Canadian sol- ting in a taxpayer building, using your taxpayer the yellow ribbons.
Advertising & Production Manager,
diers now have the difference maker: They have BlackBerry to distract yourself from the more So, councillor Mitchell, what’s the difference
Laurie Tigert-Dumas
yellow ribbon magnets in the Waterloo region. mundane business of council. You had better between yellow and purple ribbons?
Earlier this week, the cities of Kitchener, not be making apolitical decisions. “In my opinion, there is no difference,” she
General Manager, Catherine Bolger
Cambridge and Waterloo along with the regional So, I asked him to tell me how a politician said.
municipality of Waterloo all agreed to place “sup- can make apolitical decisions. So Mitchell plans to bring forth a motion
Sales Assistant, Andrea Hession
port our troops” magnetic decals on emergency “We’re not promoting or not promoting for the purple ribbons on August 14, the next
vehicles. Furthermore, while Waterloo Regional whether or not troops should be anywhere council meeting. She also expects representatives
Board of Directors
Police cars don’t have the ribbons (yet), they that they are right now,” he said. “I think you from other ribbon campaigns — such as breast
have offered a yellow ribbon pin to any officer understand — we’re not making a judgement cancer, missing children and AIDS — to apply
President, Adam Gardiner
who wishes to wear one. And, of course, this to send troops or to not send troops […] Have for their ribbons on regional vehicles too.
all culminates into one poignant question: What I made myself clear? Do you understand how Mitchell said she feels as though she has to
Vice-president, Jacqueline McKoy
the hell do these ribbons do? we, as elected officials can do that?” explain herself, just because she doesn’t believe
Short answer — nothing. Aside from my condescension meter going there should be a magnet on regional vehicles.
Treasurer, Lu Jiang
Long answer — absolutely nothing. haywire, I understood the councillor perfectly “Everyone says ‘you don’t support the
Supporting soldiers is like supporting oxygen well — I understood he made a very poor troops,’” said Mitchell. “I consider it emotional
Secretary, Alaa Yassim
— everyone automatically does it, right? There’s judgement in word selection, and he needed to blackmail.” Mitchell added that, personally, she
an inherent problem with the yellow ribbons. back-pedal. not only supports Canadian troops, but also the
Staff liaison, Rob Blom
Some see these things not as supporting the But Whaley wasn’t the only one to bring this war efforts in Afghanistan.
troops, but supporting a war. issue up (he was just the only one brash enough to As for the city, Whaley said the ribbons will
People who back the ribbon initiative all say call it “apolitical.”) In Cambridge, the motion to cost the city about $350 in total. He also added
Editorial Staff
the same thing: this is supporting the troops, add ribbons passed 6-1. In Kitchener, they didn’t that, since the ribbons are magnetic, each em-
Assistant Editor, Ashley Csanady
not neccesarily a support of war. And as for even need a vote — after what The Record called ployee will have the right to remove the ribbon
Lead Proofreader, Kinga Jakab
those who loathe the idea of ribbon decals, “informal discussions” amongst city councillors, for the duration of his or her shift. Great, now
Cover Editor, Angelo Florendo
they say... well, they say the same thing — they the go-ahead was given to ribbons there, too. taxpayers have wasted money on an apolitical
News Editor, Emma Tarswell
support the troops, but not the war. Seemingly, And for regional emergency vehicles, including decision for a vehicle decal that might spend
News Assistant, Adrienne Raw
everybody supports the soldiers, they just can’t all ambulances, regional council waived a policy some of its time tucked neatly in the glove
Opinion Editor, Mohammad Jangda
figure out how to support them. So why pass a prohibiting support of any group or cause by compartment.
Features Editor, Scott Houston
motion for a cause that every Canadian being giving the thumbs-up to yellow ribbons. And all this for a yellow ribbon magnet. No
Arts Editor, Andrew Abela
already believes in? Wait another minute. matter how much political speak councillors like
Science Editor, Brendan Pinto
Cue Waterloo councillor Mark Whaley. Surely this policy has been challenged before. Mark Whaley feed us, it doesn’t change the fact
Sports Editor, vacant
Whaley introduced the motion to Waterloo city And sure enough, it has. With a little networking that — for our soldiers — the ribbon doesn’t
Photo Editor, Michael L. Davenport
council, which passed unanimously. So I called help, I was pointed in the direction of regional actually do anything.
Graphics Co-editor, Peter Trinh
councillor Whaley to try and find out why he councillor Jane Mitchell. Sometimes I wonder if our municipal govern-
Graphics Co-editor, Christine Ogley
brought this issue up in Waterloo city council. In a phone interview, Mitchell informed me ments do anything, either.
Web Editor, Gunjan Chopra
“It’s an apolitical decision to show that we that she had attempted, some time ago, to have
Systems Administrator, Dan Agar
care.” purple ribbons affixed to regional vehicles in
Sys. Admin. Assistant, vacant

Production Staff
Shivaun Hoad, Paul Collier,
Phil Isard, Harry Potter,
Tim Foster

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in an issue of Imprint, or Imprint declares their intent not
The Missing Link
to publish the material. The full text of this agreement is
I like porn. I do. I’m not ashamed of it. Being a I don’t think I could ever do that.”
available upon request.
Imprint does not guarantee to publish articles, pho- fan, I think it’s fantastic that porn is slowly en- COMMUNITY EDITORIAL The missing link in the mainstream is porn
tographs, letters or advertising. Material may not be tering the mainstream. Not that I want 24 hour that exemplifies men pushing their boundaries. 
published, at the discretion of Imprint, if that material is access on CBC, but I think it’s good and healthy be one-sided. Women are portrayed as more ex- Not just in what they’re willing to ask for, but
deemed to be libelous or in contravention with Imprint’s that sexual material is becoming less and less perimental, and so they are trying new things and in what they’re willing to do, or have done to
policies with reference to our code of ethics and jour- censored and that enjoyment of porn is being being more adventurous. While the girls are going them. What we need now is the mainstreaming
nalistic standards. de-stigmatized. out of their way to discover themselves, men are of  porn that encourages women to ask for their
Imprint is published every Friday during fall and The best part of porn losing its stigma is that just sitting back and watching the show. Another needs to be met — porn that models men enjoy-
winter terms, and every second Friday during the spring it is giving people permission to explore sexuality imbalance has been created, whereby women ing things that lie outside of socially acceptable
term. Imprint reserves the right to screen, edit and refuse and to try things that they might never have been are encouraged to perform for their partners behaviour: men fucking each other, men begging
advertising. One copy per customer. Imprint ISSN 0706- willing to try otherwise... and many, one hopes, — sometimes with their partners — but never in for a strap-on, men exposing themselves to their
7380. Imprint CDN Pub Mail Product Sales Agreement are discovering that they actually like things like ways that push their partners’ boundaries.  partners in public, men being spanked and so
no. 40065122. plugs, clamps, bondage, oral, anal, exhibitionism, Porn provides only one set of models; men on. I hold no illusions about why this porn is not
voyeurism, group, etc. Others are trying them and like watching women engage in lesbian sex, so mainstream, but I think the result is everyone gets
Next staff meeting: taking them off the to-do list forever — and that’s women are portrayed as being curious about short-changed: women are not being given permis-
Monday, July 16, 2007 OK too. The old Mae West adage, “I’ll try anything lesbian sex; men like fucking ass, so women are sion to have the full range of fantasies, let alone
12:30 p.m. once, twice if I like it, three times to make sure,” portrayed as enjoying anal sex; men like ejaculat- fulfill them; and men, by being permitted to stay
had it exactly right. ing on women’s faces, so women are portrayed in their safety zones, are denied a world of sexual
Next board meeting: So now that porn is entering the as passionate about facials. It’s nearly impossible experiences they might otherwise enjoy.
Friday, July 13, 2007 mainstream, people are seeing it more and more to completely avoid hetero-normative porn, but Men should be quoting Mae West too.
10:30 a.m. and what they’re seeing tells them to explore. So you have to work to find porn that would make
far, though, all the experimentation appears to a second-year male university student say “Dude, — Anonymous
Imprint, Friday, July 13, 2007 Opinion 
Take back the night? Letter TO THE Thank you Christine & Imprint

EDITOR Most people I know would be really offended by Christine’s opinion. While
I live behind Mel’s she has her ways of being cheeky, she does raise an important perspective.
Diner, so late night As a campus minister in the city, I thought it appropriate to say thank you for
trips through the plaza Disagree with Pastor bringing these problematic evangelistic methods to the forefront. Also, I’d
on Fubar and Caesar Russo? Read something like to assure Christine and the readers of Imprint that many Christians are
Martini’s nights are else that irks or excites doing their best to re-examine and re-articulate their evangelistic zeal in a way
always interesting, to you? that is truly authentic. I’m also sure the Campus for Christ desires to grow in
say the least. their approach to serve and support students on campus.
A few weeks ago, I Christine’s important perspective is a great sign on how much we can learn
was crossing the plaza
Send us your your
even from those who don’t particularly agree with our perspective. Thank
to a set of stairs I use as a cut-through when a group of guys hanging thoughts. you.
from a giant pickup truck started heckling me. It was late — around 1 — Domenic Ruso, M.A.
a.m. or so — and I was alone, mildly intoxicated and completely powerless Lead Pastor, The Embassy
but to keep my head down and suffer through their pigheaded remarks.
As I approached the stairs, they proceeded to pull their truck in front of
the entrance. When I tried to go around the front, they pulled forward;
around back, they backed up.
Furious, I stormed around the back of the truck, giving a wide berth
Pink tie activism
and just daring them to test me further. Shaking with rage, I stalked home.
My own helplessness, my inability to do anything except try not to exacer- The Internet Collective actively tries COMMUNITY is spent dealing with revolving-door
bate the situation further and even the prickle of fear I felt infuriated me. to court computer geeks to work on a attrition and retraining instead of
Every fiber of me wanted to turn around and tell those motherfuckers centralized WPIRG infrastructure so EDITORIAL matters at hand.
exactly how ignorant and childish they were — but I knew that doing so that the rest of the organization can 3) I wish I could say that all uni-
could potentially result in a very nasty situation so I left the four rednecks do the important things like, you know, This is probably due to the follow- versity students spend most of their
to their longnecks and stormed around my room instead. change the world (instead of changing ing reasons: time doing work, but it does feel like
It’s not the first time that something along these lines has happened to their web pages). They don’t get all that 1) This school loves balkaniza- select non-math faculties work in
me and I’m sure it won’t be the last. Discussing the event with a group of many people, but it’s a great resource for tion. I have heard arts faculty crave extreme workload bursts while math
female friends, I heard tales of fear — both real and imagined — when people who want to carry the revolution interested people to work on their is more of a constant churn. If this
walking somewhere alone at night. I hate the fact that I have to consider without being that in-your-face or even convergence of english/philoso- is actually the case, who can blame
what path to take through a park or walk in fear to my own front door all that idealistic about it. phy/etc. and computer science and students for spending their time on
just because I’m female. I was at a meet’n’greet for the Wa- not even think about asking their weekly assignments instead of taking
I know 90 per cent of my paranoid freakouts stem from too many terloo Sustainability project a few weeks northern neighbours, many of whom advantage of their student population
scary movies and episodes of Buffy when I was little, but the question ago. I encountered a few people who would love to work on an educational membership?
still remains; how valid are those fears, and how many of them are our were frustrated with the state of their video game based on the Canterbury
own fabrications from years of pop culture submersion? group’s online communication and in- Tales or whatever. For goodness’ I hope that the Internet Collective,
From Little Red Riding Hood to Scream, women are taught to look twice frastructure. They were not at all aware sake, we have at least one class per Waterloo Students for Information
when going down a dark alleyway or to look over their shoulder when of what other like-minded groups were term of idiots who sacrifice sleep for Commons and all other geek brother-
walking through a park. From our first fables through present day horror doing, and it even sounded like these OpenGL! In general, one faculty’s hoods continue growing as I’ve seen
flicks cautionary tales have been told to young girls so they know what groups shared similar mandates but population tends to be ignorant, them do in these last few months. I
kind of situations to avoid; however, what if those little life lessons are remained isolated; two different groups condescending and rather scared of hope that the UW Website Designers
actually perpetuating the problem? dividing resources that could better be any other. If that stupidity permeates (a proposed Feds club pending ap-
I have to wonder, if I didn’t have that tiny grain of fear twitching at spent together. But that’s a political issue our primary function, can you expect proval) achieve their plan of forming
the back of my head, would I have turned around and faced them? Told upon which I’m digressing. it to dissipate when it comes to our a centralized computing resource for
them off and stopped them from bothering another girl? Or would I You’d figure that, in the centre of extra-curricular activities? Feds organizations, and that some kind
have made it worse? nerd batongaville, there would be at least 2) Surely there are a significant of movement allows Waterloo to have
Most likely, had I stopped they would have laughed, said something a sizeable enough bunch of nerd-activ- number of people who don’t par- a strong activist presence in math/CS
crude and that would have been it. They would have done it to the next ists to set up these ships and keep them take in co-op, but this school is that matches that in the interest/ethnic
girl too, and I probably would have been even angrier. The situation running. This fourth-year CS nihilist structured such that too many CS groups we tend to favour.
could have proved dangerous, so logically I know that walking away was shouldn’t have to be concerned about people spend two months settling
the best thing to do. the state of his faculty’s attitude on so- into their roles at Waterloo before — Gaelan D’costa
Are scary movies and modern day fables created to teach women to cial activism. This school has untapped preparing themselves to leave again. Gaelan D’costa was one of those
protect themselves from necessary evils? Or, are they abetting the system power — coder power — and we haven’t I’m certain that no matter how many OpenGL idiots, in which case the term is
by normalizing a female culture of fear? yet done a damn thing about it. people stick around, too much time apt description and not one of endearment.
My thoughts are split on this one, because I feel pop culture is more
a manifestation of the ills of our society than a catalyst; however, its
impact on our society is equally undeniable. So, I leave it to you. Go
online to and share your thoughts in the
comment section because this issue is too complex and multifaceted
to be fully explored here. I’ll be adding thoughts, research and links to
other articles throughout the week on this very subject to help further
the discussion.

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