In theory, every student publication must be able to practice its right to freedom of expression. As the main vehicle of the views and concerns of the students, the biggest population inside the campus, the publication must be guarded not just by its staff members but the entire students against possible violations of this freedom.
However, it is common knowledge that what is written in paper or what is stated in everything-that-ought-to-happen usually does not translate into practice. Recently for instance, the administration of the Holy Angel University (HAU) illegally implements the non-mandatory collection of funds of the publication and files charges of libel against the staff of The Angelite. These questionable actions of the HAU Administration do not have a sound basis and only manifest the repressive character of most school administrations in the country.
Given the potential of every student publication in contributing to the existing discourses in the university, from every news article, investigative report or wall statement it releases, it is always prone to repressive mechanisms especially once it does or writes something that does not favor the interests of the powers-that-be.
In the end, we condemn the move of the HAU administration that led to the non-mandatory collection of publication funds and the filing of libel case against the publication. We see this as part of the larger set-up where conflicts between those who protect the status quo and those who seek to change it naturally exist and those who are at the side of the status quo resorting to all means possible, even unjustified ones, just to quell the forces of those who seek to bring in change. While the Administration aims to sustain the existence of a corrupted system marked by conservatism and repression and where the constituents are kept meek and unquestioning, there are those who are at the forefront of promoting critical thinking and progressive actions. Clearly, the student publication has the potential to be at the forefront of every struggle for exposing and ending the unjust set-up where it exists. And only through the collective effort of everyone who aspires to change the current, corrupted set-up, from the publication staff to the entire studentry, can the struggle to end the existing order be won.
DEFEND THE HAU-ANGELITE!
STOP ALL CAMPUS PRESS FREEDOM VIOLATIONS!
UPHOLD CAMPUS PRESS FREEDOM!