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Decision to nix controversial song borders on censorship
Ohio University’s Marching 110 was slated to play Robin Thicke’s hit single, “Blurred Lines” during halftime of Saturday’s rout of Austin Peay. But the most exciting band in the land chose not to perform the provocative tune after a pointed push from university leadership.
The track, which features T.I. and Pharrell Williams, has divided opinions from OU to the United Kingdom. It has received backlash since its release for having sexist lyrics that arguably objectify women and promote rape culture.
After the raunchy music video was released and Miley Cyrus twerked to the tune at the VMAs, some British universities even banned the song.
With a reported rape in the first weeks of Fall Semester and a guilty verdict in a rape trial during the summer months fresh in our minds, the decision not to play the song — however catchy it might be — was the right one.
We respect our administrators for allowing the Marching 110 to have the final say on whether the song was played, but we don’t think the pressure to cancel the performance should have been put on the band in the first place.
The song is brash and distasteful, and we should consider the message it portrays to listeners.
Of course, no one is saying that it was the message that caused the 110 to choose “Blurred Lines” to perform at halftime: It was picked because it is popular and catchy. But regardless of intentions, to play the song is to continue putting its message — that a girl who says “no” secretly wants to sleep with you and that those who say “yes” just want it more — out there.
However, while we believe the 110 should not have chosen to perform the song, we also believe the administration should not have stepped in. The university should not censor the music on campus; we students are adults now, and can form opinions for ourselves.
The initiative to ban the song from anywhere, if made, should come from the students.
Editorials represent the majority opinion of The Post’s executive editors.