College yearbook escapes student government censorship

MICHIGAN — The Michigan State University Student Assembly rejecteda bill Thursday aimed at seizing editorial control of the student yearbookfrom the staff.

Katie Harper, the business manager of The Red Cedar Log, saidalthough she is pleased with the outcome, charges of neglecting calls todiversify the yearbook — the controversy that originally sparked the bill– are unlikely to end in the near future.

“We want as many inputs and reactions as we can get and if people donot just come to us cramming bills in our face, we are more than willingto help,” Harper said. “The outcome turned out okay, but I think it isgoing to be a long battle, and it could have turned out a lot easier.”

The student assembly accepted a provision of the bill that establishesa new position of a diversity managing editor who will be responsible foradvising the yearbook staff on issues of diversity but will not have thepower to overrule the decisions of the editor.

Rianne Jones, editor of the yearbook, said she approves of the new managingeditor position intended for the 2001-02 staff.

“The only part of the bill that I supported was the establishment ofa diversity editor because that makes the book more diverse,” Jones said.

Representatives from the Black Student Alliance and the Women’s Councilintroduced the bill Jan. 19 in order to direct more coverage of minoritiesin the yearbook.

Previous Stories:

Studentgovernment threatens censorship of country’s largest yearbook (1/25/01)