A newspaper is supposed to be an instrument for promoting wisdom and intellectual insights among the public. How much more would it be expected from a newspaper dedicated to Leiden University, which marvels upon centuries long heritage of intellectual excellence?
Discouragingly, the identifying feature of our university newspaper (Mare), seems to have become echoing memes of debauchery, for some reason. Featuring explicit pornography content on the distributed issue prior to Good Friday (‘Doe niet spastisch over seks’, Mare 24, 29 maart), showed how far Mare has become alienated to the essence of humanity in general, and Leiden University in specific.
In a world on the verge of environment and humanity crises, can’t our University Leiden newspaper make any better contribution than advocating sex slavery and depravity as new social norms? As a member of this university, I request my complaint to be published in the same newspaper, and I demand apology from Mare’s editorial board for its disappointing representation of our university. I am looking forwards to your response.
Amirmehdi Saedi, Postdoc, Leiden Institute of Chemistry
Fortunately, Mare has not become alienated to the essence of humanity in general. As an independent newspaper, we write about everything that concerns the academic community, without any taboos or restrictions. Whether you like it or not; if the biggest library in the country (the Koninklijke Bibliotheek in The Hague), is taking over the biggest private collection of Dutch porn, and the national museum of literature (Meermanno) decides to display some of the pieces at an exhibition, it’s news. The fact that collector Bert Sliggers got his PhD at Leiden University makes it even more interesting. (And by the way, in the same issue we wrote about security crises, the LBGT-community, Trump’s wall, the university’s diversity policy, etc.).
Frank Provoost, chief editor Mare