Spare Rib fostered campus debate on sex

by Ann Koppel | 11/24/93 6:00am

To the Editor:

As a "responsible feminist" I feel compelled to respond to Matthew Berry's editorial about the Spare Rib "sex issue."

I see nothing wrong with the Spare Rib issue. It got people talking about some things we are all too often afraid to talk about. I must commend the writers and editors of Spare Rib for their maturity and courage to deal with the touchy issues.

Sex and sexuality are central to discussions of gender issues. In that respect, this Spare Rib did a great service to feminism. I don't see how talking about sex and sexuality demeans feminists.

Feminism as I see it is about freedom of choice -- whether it is freedom to pursue a career without being branded "selfish" or freedom to sleep with who you want to when you want to.

From reading Berry's branding of a frank discussion of sex "filth" one might get the impression that to be a conservative is to be closed-minded, puritanical, and hypocritical.

Berry's contention that the Dartmouth Review would never get away with publishing such "tastelessness and irresponsibility" is off the mark. Guess what? They get away with it every week!

I am routinely offended by sexism, racism, homophobia and general closed-mindedness of all of the conservative papers on campus. But I grudgingly respect their freedom of speech and put those papers in the recycling bin. Perhaps Matthew Berry should do the same. Ann Koppel '94