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This week, Catholic University newspaper the Tower reported that the Washington City Paper would no longer be made available on the school’s campus. In fact, the paper has been gone from the CUA campus since May 7th, the day that my story on CUA’s campus sex ban, Screw U: Inside the Secret Sex Life of Catholic University, was published.
That morning, a very nice man who identified himself only as a CUA employee called to tell me that the university was removing the paper from the campus racks. “I just wanted to bring that to your attention and let you know that really sucks, because I know for a fact there are a lot of staff members and students that love to read your paper, and especially for this article,” he said. ” Again, love your work, awesome, thanks so much for throwing that out there, and, we got a really great chuckle for it. I hope you don’t get in too much trouble. Take care of yourself.”
The Catholic University administration was less amused.
Catholic University spokesperson Victor Nakas, whom I quoted extensively in the piece on the subjects of premarital sex, masturbation, and men kissing, explained the school’s reasoning for removing the paper from campus. “These decisions were occasioned by the City Paper’s hateful article ridiculing our Catholic faith,” Nakas told the Tower. Some CUA studentswere moderately pissed about it, but they were dealing.“Whether or not that article was a true portrayal of students, we should be able to decide for ourselves whether or not it’s worth reading,” sophomore Joe McAnaney told the Tower. “It’s disappointing that I can’t just pick up the City Paper in the Pryz anymore, even though I understand the University’s decision.”
Oh, Catholic University, always banning things! Catholic University of America has banned sex, masturbation, pornography, and condom possession among unmarried students for years. Let’s see how that’s going for them: clandestine condom distribution, check; student center sex, check; healthy LGBT population (considering), check; masturbation, check; celebrity naked photos, check; girls sneaking into boys dorms, check; boys sneaking into girls’ dorms, check; high-profile sexual assault case involving videotaped group sex in open CUA dorm room, check.
Unfortunately, college students prefer doin’ it to reading alternative weekly newspapers. Or do they? Perhaps a good campus banning is just what the City Paper needed to catch on with the CUA crowd. By my calculations, the Washington City Paper should already be well on its way to becoming the new campus forbidden fruit, a taboo rag which CUA students will hide beneath their mattresses and transport secretly between dorm buildings by slipping it inside the pages of the Express. How can it be wrong when it feels so right?
Or, maybe they’ll just read it online.