In the past few weeks, a number of people have made comments, public and private, about The Mirror’s “He Said/She Said” column, most of them making complaints about the content of the “He Said” column.

First, we wish to make it very clear that any columns or letters in the commentary section of this newspaper reflect only the opinion of whomever writes them, as is the case with most every newspaper.

Moreover, this particular column is meant to be provocative. Obviously, any time a writer writes about sex or relationships, the results may be incendiary. But this is precisely the point: the topics of sex and relationships cause division and argument. This is why “He Said/She Said” exists in the first place.

On several occasions, some have complained that the content of either the “He Said” or “She Said” column has been “distasteful” or “unacceptable.” While recognizing and understanding completely their point of view that such comments may be insulting, we stress that comments like this are satirical. That is, this column is not meant to be taken as necessarily an expression of what these writers believe, but as a commentary on the viewpoints between men and women. The writers intentionally use a stereotypical narrative to highlight real attitudes and beliefs, both good and bad, held by students here.

Perhaps this is one of the biggest reasons why the column has offended so many: the attitudes and actions illustrated in it – which may not even be embraced by the writer – may be expressed by students here. This is the purpose of satire.

Furthermore, we feel it would be a much greater insult to the student body as a whole to censor or edit a commentary piece based on the opinion or values of another person. The purpose of the commentary section is for people who have different opinions to share them, even if they are offensive or disagreeable to others.

It should be noted that if a writer is going to make a meaningful statement about any issue that will be a point of disagreement, such as conflicts in relationships at this university, it should not surprise that the statements made will not be pleasing to all who read them.

The author of “He said” has used satire to demonstrate a stereotypical viewpoint of a man on this campus, and men in general. In so doing, he has provided an entertaining column for our first month of this academic year.

However, if any member of this university community has an issue with the role that he portrays in the column, it should serve as inspiration for discourse within the university community. This discourse should also include writing response letters to The Mirror, so we thank those that have elected to do so for their thoughts.

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