October 23, 2002

The Vermilion: 1904-2002?

As a special Halloween gift, the SGA has something frightening cooked up for the Oct. 30-31 referendum. You’ve read so much about it in here lately, not because we like to talk about ourselves (except at the meetings), but because we want to live!

Here’s the deal: the Daily Advertiser wants to conquer campus. Presumably, those pilgrims have their sights set on new territory. Think of the Vermilion as the natives, and of this column as a smoke signal.

I read the Daily Advertiser with regularity. It has evolved over the years to cover this area in ways other dailies with larger circulation areas can’t quite accomplish. I will continue to read them, just as I have since before I could read.

However, if you are searching for the absolute worst deal of which you could possibly conceive (and who isn’t?), then get out of the used-car lot and pop by the newsstand.

The proposal is a full-fledged bad idea for students because you and I will pay more tuition to get less. It’s a bad idea for the school because it appears that they are willing to put money ahead of its own free press. It’s even bad for the Advertiser itself, for they would lose revenue to gain—by student population figures—a rather negligible expansion of readership.

Needless to say, our newspaper’s advertisers would break up with us too.

Beyond the statistics, though, lies the real and most important reason that the Advertiser should remain in the little orange box: a student newspaper simply is one of the best resources of any university.

Just as the broadcasting students have their television studio, theater students have their venue and the science and engineering departments have labs, students interested in writing have the Vermilion. Journalism and writing students can only learn so much in the classroom, and the Vermilion offers the crucial real-world simulator that they need to succeed.

The paper has gifts for you too; a view of campus that no one else can touch and—through letters, guest editorials and other means—a forum for anyone to be as much a part of our pages as our writers.

We do not go through the pains of composing this newspaper every week for the paycheck (that reminds me…got any spare change?) Our real payday comes every Wednesday when we pick up a fresh copy of our hard work.

The Vermilion boasts a diverse group of talented individuals from all walks of life. For campus coverage, you can’t beat my good friends Krista Hollier-Ditucci, Brittain Quibodeaux, Amanda Guidry, Joy Ashlyn Smith, Kemisha Ware, Shaun Hearen, Jennifer Reinert, Melanie DeHart, Meagan Crochet, fellow Mighty Lion alumnus John Raggio II and Dan “Pimp Daddy” Murphy.

They keep us up to speed on UL news, sports and entertainment and keep public debate alive and controversial, exactly the way it should be.

Rounding out our humble publication are the cartoonists--Burt D., Savann Mok and my good friend Robert “Robbo” Guillory—and the columnists: Eric LeBlanc, Heath Vercher, Andrew Hebert, Cheramie Richard and some stud whose name escapes me.

Sarah Weber, Casey Delatte and Whitney Griffin help make the paper look purty, while Betsy Slack, Rick Garneau and Kelly David create photographic gold. Angelique Guillory keeps our ads coming in.

We walk among you, share the same classes and ride the same transit buses; we know what you want and need to read, simply because we ARE you.

By all means purchase a Daily Advertiser, an Advocate or USA Today or pick up the Times or other free publications anytime. Or try the library and get your media fix from all over the world.

For UL students, however, the best value remains your free student newspaper, the Vermilion. A “no” vote on the proposal will keep it that way.


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