Editorial: SRTV nudity debacle requires prudence

With John Muir College senior Steve York at his televised antics yet again, everyone charged with mediating the latest conflict between Student-Run Television, the A.S. Council and the campus administration must first take a deep breath and step back. Most importantly, they must keep their egos from standing in the way of a satisfactory solution to the controversy.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be happening. By voting to reinsert the provision prohibiting all graphic sexual nudity on SRTV, the A.S. Council may have closed a door that cannot be reopened.

It’s obvious that pride is affecting policy. Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Joseph W. Watson burned his hand by giving SRTV an ultimatum less than a week before the newest pornography was aired. Will he stick by his heavy-handed promise to shut down the station now that it’s defied him by airing nudity? It would be best if he didn’t. Under the provisions of SRTV’s charter, this incident necessitates a meeting with station directors and the A.S. Council to resolve the conflict — not unilateral action by either Watson or the council.

The A.S. Council wields much power in this conflict, but so far, its members have been overly reactionary. First, they arranged a hasty — and apparently unconstitutional — meeting on Oct. 23, passing several changes to the SRTV charter and rules and regulations, despite the fact that the current charter requires the aforementioned meeting. Secondly, the council’s ruling to ban graphic nudity has opened the student government up to inevitable legal ramifications, for which students’ fees will eventually pay.

Those charged with responding to this conflict must act decisively, but not in a way that violates procedure or causes this battle of egos escalate.