Let it collect dust

It’s a shame we have to make a decision between wrecking our civil rights through censorship or insulting an important group of Americans by allowing racism on our campus. Such disharmony, however, is probably one of the goals of the bigoted publishers of Thunderbolt.

Thunderbolt is a blatantly racist publication. I have been informed of this through the media, not through personal contact. I chose not to have contact with it. I suggest anyone who is offended by such material or opposes its ideas, also choose not to have contact with it. I also suggest that all attempts to censor the publication be stopped immediately.

Because a publication offends someone—regardless of what it says about whom—is no reason to impose censorship. This campus has lived with Thunderbolt since 1969. We can live with it until its disgusting bigotry is nothing more than a bad memory. Americans tolerate a variety of ideas because the sharing of ideas—good or bad—creates social awareness.

Please consider the works of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He stood up and went against the “main-stream” of society to fight for what he believed. Dr. King was censored, yet he fought back and won. He did not win, however, by quieting bigotry. Instead, he rose above bigotry and conquered.

We at NIU also need to rise above bigotry and conquer. To censor Thunderbolt would be a victory for its publishers, for they could then point an accusing finger at us for infringing on their freedom of speech.

Censorship is not the answer. Instead, let Thunderbolt’s racist crap continue to be published. Let it continue to be filed away in NIU’s library. And, most important of all, let it collect dust as it sits on the library shelves unread.

Bill Rowe