The UWO Gazette's "Spoof" Issue

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joshmanicus joshmanicus's picture
The UWO Gazette's "Spoof" Issue


joshmanicus joshmanicus's picture

Hey all, the following was printed in the UWO Gazette on the 30th of March in their annual "Spoof" issue.


Labia Majora Carnage
by "Xavier"
Gazette Staff

Last night, local women hit the streets for the first ever Take Back the Nightie march.
The march was led by members of Western's Women's Issues Network, who, for the first time all year, left their circle in the University Community Centre, where witnesses claim they perform tribal dances and yell alienating slurs about pussies and cunts.
The march was organized because women were sick of wearing uncomfortable, soul-crushing lingerie for their boyfriends, lesbian lovers and partners whose gender aren't identifiable.
"My vagina told me she hates thongs... they're far too restrictive," said Jennifer Ostrich, a vocal WIN member. "And what my vagina wants, my vagina gets. Nighties are far more comfortable and practical. They let my vagina be free to the world so she can speak out and say whatever she wants."
Katie Conservative, another WIN member, said the march also aims to reclaim nighties from cross-dressing men who have bogarted white, crocheted, old-fashioned nighties for far too long.
"My vagina told me that for too long, men have taken things that are rightfully ours," Conservative said. "Tonight we take back nighties just like we took back hairy armpits and stilettos, even though trannies are still trying to steal them too."
Near the end of the march, chaos broke out when Ostrich's vagina crawled from under flowing white nightie, stole a loudspeaker and went on a rampage.
"How dare you act like you know what I have to say," the vagina screamed down Richmond Row.
"You don't know me, bee-otch," it squealed. "You can't even see me through all this hair you've let over-grow. Think of me. I can't even breathe down here!"
Upon seeing the chaos, London Police Chief Murray Faulkner stopped greasing his nightstick and intervened.
He grabbed the loudspeaker from Ostrich's wild vagina and took it into a dark alley to teach it a lesson.
To Ostrich's dismay, the vagina followed, giggling as it said, "I love it when a man in uniform takes control."
Women were delighted to see groups of men standing on the sidewalks in support.
"It was so great to see men supporting us in our nighties and helping us to spread vagina peace and love," Conservative said.
One man held a sign that read, "Yeah baby, I'll take back your nightie anytime!"
What the marchers couldn't see was that the men were using their penises as the beat off to the women in their long, flowing garbs.
"It takes a little imagination, but once you picture them without the nasty dreadlocks, the hideous piercings, the hairy pits and the beards, some of them are actually kinda hot," said Cocky McFratboy, while taking a break from masturbating.
The event ended when a man sent WIN into a screaming, tribal frenzy by yelling, "You want an opinion! With a push-up bra, you could actually have a nice rack of lamb going on there!"

Emails to write to if this bothers you:

President & Vice-Chancellor Dr. Paul Davenport at [email protected]

Gazette Editor-in-Chief, Ian Van Den Hurk at [email protected]

equity services at Western at [email protected]

incoming president USC President Tom Stevenson [email protected]


Here is what was posted by members of the Women's Issues Network at UWO on a Facebook group devoted to this issue:


Keep reading. It really starts to get good with the very much not-so-subtle allusions to actual members of WIN - including members of WIN who have been vocally and actively criticizing and trying make the Gazette less offensive and more representative and accountable all year (surprise surprise) and the suggestion that one of those members be raped to "teach her a lesson" - and that she would enjoy it.

Please take a few minutes to take action.


1. the Gazette Editor-in-Chief, Ian Van Den Hurk at [email protected]

2. UWO also has policies on equity and human rights that we feel this article severely violates (more info here: [url=][/url] You can email the equity services at Western at [email protected] to complain and to draw their attention to this article.

3. The article also uses the REAL name of London Police Chief Murray Faulkner, who, in this story (and we quote) "stopped greasing his nightstick and intervened. He grabbed the loudspeaker from Ostrich's wild vagina and took it into a dark alley to teach it a lesson." Email or call the police chief to see how he feels about being represented as a rapist by the Gazette, and encourage him to make a public statment clarifying his position on violence against women in this community.
Email: [email protected], Phone: (519) 661-5670

4. Dr. Paul Davenport, President and Vice-Chancellor of Western. Though the Gazette technically operates independently from the university, as Sheetal points out in her emal to Dr. Davenport, "it really isn't doing UWO--and that includes its community of alumni and friends-- any favours by generating a negative international reputation for the school as one that not only makes light of rape, but encourages it as a method of silencing women's voices on campus."
Email: [email protected]

5. USC President Tom Stevenson, email: [email protected]. From the Gazette website: "The Gazette is owned and published by the University Students' Council (USC)." Which also means it's paid for by student fees.

6. The London Free Press news desk at [email protected] or the editor-in-chief, paul berton at [email protected] (though he may just forward it to the news desk anyway...). You can also send a letter to the LFP editor at this page, [url=]http://www....

And while you're at it, bring this to the attention of any contacts you have with any media outlets anywhere.

PLEASE PLEASE forward this to anyone who you think might be as enraged as we are. The Gazette has gotten away with a lot, but it CAN'T, MUSTN'T get away with this. Your help in spreading the word about this disgusting article is greatly appreciated. (In short: we want the whole internets to hear about Western and its misogynist rapist paper.) THANK YOU.


I think the Gazette wants to provoke a loud and vociferous response to this, so, for what it's worth, I would be disinclined to give them what they want.

They are just going to hide behind satirical licence anyway.

The issue of recomending the rape of an identifiable person seems to this unlearned in law person as a complaint for the Crown Attorney to hear, or failing that, civil proceedings.

I think the better idea is to pick up a copy of the Gazette, and take carefull note of who advertised in them. Then I'd arrange quiet meetings and boycotts of those businesses.

In fact, if someone has a copy of the Gazette, why not let us know who advertised in that issue?

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: Tommy_Paine ]


Gazette tells complainants to 'get over' themselves and accept 'jokes' about raping actual individuals at UWO:


Talkin' satire and the spoof issue

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

It has come to our attention that some of the Western community is disappointed or even furious with last Friday’s Spoof Issue. Debate is occurring on some campus message boards and a protest is supposedly happening Thursday in the University Community Centre atrium at 1:30 p.m.

Some of these students, who belong to campus minority groups, feel they were negatively portrayed or were outright attacked in the Spoof Issue. Our response? Get over yourself.

Ninety per cent of satire will offend somebody. For the most part, jokes inherently involve making fun of something. Indeed, there’s a time and place for jokes. We believe The Gazette Spoof Issue is one of them.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture



College newspaper are somewhat different from real businesses.

This is the last issue of the year. The following year will likely have a completely different editorial board. If you want to reach someone, reach next year's incoming editor in chief, tell him you're dissapointed or something.

That being said, I wrote at the McGill Tribune for two years. The year after I left there were a lot of sexist articles and a lot of people complained. The following year, there was a different editorial board, and none of that.


Well, in that case, there's also a time and a place for direct action against the Gazette, isn't there?

Eggs and spray paint, anyone?


Why would you vindicate their writer's false point about feminists?

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: 500_Apples ]

Maysie Maysie's picture

I was thinking rocks and bricks, myself.

Fuckwad asshats.



Why would you vindicate their writer's false point about feminists?

How can you vindicate a false point?

I think you should stay out of this area of babble and I won' be surprised if you have been warned to before.


Asking an aggressive question and then asking someone to leave - bad form.

The writer, whoever he is, is portraying women as savages in his article. Spraypainting the office would be like snapping at someone who accuses you of having a bad temper.

I see the offensiveness and I agree. That being said, causing pain for people who had nothing to do with this (next year's incoming editorial board who would have to foot the clean-up bill) is rather counterproductive. Throwing bricks and eggs would likely only affect next year's editorial board and make the brickthrowers look bad. All the writer and the outgoing editorial board would get is a brief moment of fear, then some good laughs, and then a sense of vindicated self-righteousness.

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: 500_Apples ]

Maysie Maysie's picture


500: That being said, causing pain for people who had nothing to do with this (next year's incoming editorial board who would have to foot the clean-up bill) is rather counterproductive.

I would succinctly argue that writing hateful and violent "spoof" articles that make violence against women a joke is much more than counterproductive, and it angers and enrages many women, myself included.

I don't give a fuck what the writers think of feminists, they clearly think so little of women, yet you aren't concerned with that at all, are you 500?

And saying that I'd like to throw bricks (at the writers, btw, not the building housing the newspaper. The property is part of an institute of higher learning and has a certain amount of value and importance.) isn't at all the same as actually doing it.

It's like saying, in, like, an editorial board meeting: "Hey we should do a spoof on rape and IWD and Take Back the Night 'cuz that would be high-larious" but not actually doing it, realizing it would be offensive, stupid and greatly harmful. [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img]



'Spoof' at Western is hate, not satire

Now published at [url=[/url].

I'll have more reaction a bit later.

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: Sharon ]


Yeah I realized after I was being dense. You have not actually thrown bricks you're just talking about it. I take some things too seriously some times and here, I was being completely ridiculous.


yet you aren't concerned with that at all, are you 500?

I guess I know so many assholes I'm desensitized to it. I hear racist and sexist comments every single day from fellow students, random people, and family.

I have faith in students though. Again to repeat a story, we had a sexist column in the McGill Tribune two years ago. Everyone I asked hate it. They got a lot of angry callers. Turned out it was just the attitude of one of the editors. She's gone now. Better paper and no more idiot columns.

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: 500_Apples ]



Asking an aggressive question and then asking someone to leave - bad form.

Bad form? Seriously, you need to stay away from this forum. Your an idiot. Plain and simple. I didn't ask an agressive question, I was just shocked at your stupidity. Nothing like some you punk guy telling us feminists what we should really do and then telling us we should be nicer and less agressive at that. [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img] [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img] [img]rolleyes.gif" border="0[/img]

Ken Burch

My only question is, how big of a psycho loser do you have to be to get REJECTED from the UWO journalism department?

These guys deserve to have their worst nightmares of wild vagina dentatae come true.

The other question is...which one of them will end up editing MACLEAN'S?


UWO does not really have a journalism department. There is a Media, Information and technoculture program, but the people who write for the gazette are self-selecting, and it is fairly cliquey. It's not run by any of the university's departments though. Rather it is run by a clique of students from a range of academic disciplines.

As you can see from the article on rabble's front page, there have been progressive people who have tried to get involved, but the editors choose not to publish the articles. Editors are elected annually by those who have written usually 3 or 4 articles which have been published, so if you keep someone from publishing, then you never have to deal with them voting or running for editor.

I know the masthead is changing this year but sexist and misogynist articles and cartoons have been a major problem at UWO for several years, including derogatory ads on the "Westernizer" student dayplanner that the student union publishes. Since this year's group of writers elected next year's editors, there is no reason to believe things are going to change overnight. However, a big campaign might convince the incoming editors to reconsider what they publish.

There needs to be a systemic response. The student union that collects the Gazette levy and the Gazette itself need to have equity policies in place, that require the paper not to publish discriminatory materials. They proably need to require equity training for incoming student union executives and board members as well as the paper's editorial board, not as punishment, but as a way to foster a culture of inclusion. They might even benefit from an advisory board that includes reps from the university's faculty in the media program. Again this is a student paper and I don't think we want the university to take away all their autonomy, but there need to be institutional checks and balances put in place.

Writing to the London Free Press, the student union (USC), the university ombudsperson...all of this would put pressure on the paper.

[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: pencil-skirt ]


Ken Burch: "The other question is...which one of them will end up editing MACLEAN'S?"

Good one. My Western Alumni magazine profiling the journalists who got a heads up on the competition by writing for The Gazette went into the woodstove.

I visited the Gazette offices twice in my university career, and both times the staff were arrogant fuckheads. The same went for most of the students, however, and quite a lot of the staff, too, so I guess the Gazette only reflects the general Country Club U atmosphere of my beloved alma mater. Traditions die hard.


University of Western Rapists Ontario.

That's the meme that should be spread around the internet about UWO until the administration of the university takes notice.

"Hey, what university did you apply to?"
"Well, let's see, I applied to U of T, U of Windsor, UWO..."
"Oh, you applied to the University of Western Rapists Ontario?"
"The wha--?"


[ 08 April 2007: Message edited by: Michelle ]

joshmanicus joshmanicus's picture

According to a friend of mine who is one of the ring leaders of this group of angry students and citizens, we've probably had hundreds of emails written to a whole variety of different involved parties about this issue and I think it's safe to say that Dr. Davenport is going to be flooded with email when he shows up for work on monday! Good work guys and keep the emails coming! The more that the administration hears about this, the more pressure they'll feel to take action against the people who did this.

[img]smile.gif" border="0[/img]

Socrates Socrates's picture

I've had experience with several student papers in my day and have found that despite the changeover of editorial boards the old train the new and paper's often stay editorially similar.

When I was at Dawson College the Plant was uniformly libelous and run as an attack dog for the administration to the detriment of students. It still is.

The Link at Concordia on the other hand has been hailed as the best student paper in Canada for years despite being constantly attacked by the right wing as a scandalous opinion rag.

Editorial culture remains, which is why making a huge fuss over this disgusting attack journalism is so important.

The editors may be moving on but I'll bet several of the writers of this trash have been elected to replace them for next year.

Ken Burch

Here's an idea for a guerrilla theatre action.

Have a group of students made up in papier-mache
as giant "wild vaginas" surround the Gazette office.

Or some variation of that.

Dark Poet

Well, we did a version of that, with myself covered in all the derogatory words used in the issue, and my face done up as if I'd been beaten to make the link between these words and the violence they are often used to justify.

Actually got a fairly good response, with roughly 400 signatories to petition the administration will be receiving by hand this afternoon.



Originally posted by bigcitygal:
[b]I was thinking rocks and bricks, myself.

Fuckwad asshats.[/b]

Unlike most, I think the are occasions where violent response is warranted. But this isn't one of them. It's exactly what the Gazette would love you to do, so they can elevate themselves to the arguement of Fredom of Expression, or egads, of the press.

It's the University of Western Ontario. The only thing they understand is money. Attack the money supply to the paper, attack the money supply to the Univisity, and you will achieve your aims.

The Daddy's who pay tuition, drinking sprees etc to these punks might get tapped out if they also have to support a stupid paper.


I don't think threatening to remove the student levy which funds the campus paper is the best tactic. Students want a campus newspaper, that is student run, not always censored by administrators. Such censorship would remove the ability of students to criticize and debate things that administrators do.

What students need is for the Gazette and the USC to adopt policies to prevent this from ever happening again. The editor needs to make a retraction and apology. There should be equity policies and anti-oppression policies written into the constitution of these groups, and all the editors should have to have equity training, and sign pledges on these issues. Of course they will still have the right to write stories critical of feminism or any other progressive ideology, but they cannot incite hatred or promote rape, especially under the auspices of comedy.

I think all letters addressed to the university administrators should call for them to pressure the Gazette and the USC to do these things, as opposed to asking for the university to TAKE OVER the paper or the student union.


According to a post on the facebook group:


The Admin is putting pressure on the USC to enforce the Human Rights Code and do something about the Gazette, due to the large number of complaints received. The USC is in meetings all day today in an attempt to resolve the issue. They will send us their conclusions when they have arrived at them, and I will post them here. If we are not satisfied, we will go ahead with the USC meeting and further planning for protests etc. Just keeping y'all informed!!


Unfortunatly such portrayl of women has come up in student press issues in the very recent past. I am not sure of any other instinces that directly involved rape, but these are examples of severely objectifying female students. This doesn't even shed light on the racist things that have been published.

Here are just a few examples:

In 2003, a student newspaper was forced to apologize for running an ad that featured scantily clad women and the words "get me drunk and see what happens." Though this was an advertisement, I would argue that the editorial board has an obligation to look beyond the profit that they will make by publishing such promotion, and consider the greater good for the campus community. The school's Women's Resource Centre organized a written protest, but I am unsure of the results of this.

In 2002, the Pillar, a paper run by engineering students at the University of New Brunswick was shut down for suggesting that the school run wet t-shirt contests to encourage enrollment into the program. This again was part of a "spoof" issue, which spoke candidly of wet t-shirt contests and mud wrestling.

In 2004, an editorial at the University of Regina in the Carillon was supposed to be a joke, but caused dozens of students to protest. In an article called "To Skeet, or not to Skeet," two male students discussed the pros and cons of picking up "unattractive women" at the bar. They described what they defined as "skeets" to have sexually transmitted diseases and "who will go home with anyone, or anything, they can get their grubby little hands on." It was reported that the staff would go on to recieve training in sexual harrassment and ethics, but I'm not sure if this was actually carried out.

Spoof issues have caused contoversy since the 1950s, when staff members at the Varsity at UofT were forced to resign for what was considered inappropriate material for the time.

joshmanicus joshmanicus's picture


invites all UWO students, faculty, staff and interested London community members to a


The April 1st Gazette "spoof" issue, Rape Culture and the Chilly Climate at UWO

WHERE: Conron Hall (UC 224)
WHEN: this Friday, April 13th, 7:00-9:00 PM


Questions, email [email protected]


awesome, thanks Joshua

Maysie Maysie's picture

babble road trip to London, anyone?


Here is more of the excerpt already quoted above. It gets progressively worse. It's avalailable in full [url= [/url]


Were we homophobic when publishing a story documenting different students’ sexual orientations and the stigmas they face in the university environment (Feb. 14, 2007)? Were we racist when covering Black History Month (Feb. 9, 2007)? Did we impede religious freedom when reporting on Islam Awareness Day (Feb. 7, 2007)? Were we sexist when tackling female professors’ struggles to shatter the glass ceiling (March 8, 2007)?

As is often the case in this extremely PC era, there’s a knee-jerk reaction to the first sign of something “negative.” It doesn’t matter how out of context the supposedly detrimental pieces are from the paper’s mission; it’s easier to strike quickly while charged with emotion than to thoughtfully consider the circumstances. Who cares what The Gazette publishes in 99 of its issues — it’s the one that looks like it should be sold in grocery store checkout lines that really matters, right?

Of course, even if our work is entirely in jest, critics say, we’re promoting a negative message for Western to blindly gobble up. But please don’t insult our readers’ intelligence.

It goes on to culminate with:


Or maybe it’s just that most of Western’s religions, women, homosexuals, babies, god-like dictators, cyclists, student politicians, police, librarians, help groups, administration, squirrels, geese and zombies know a joke when they see one.


Paul Davenport's Official Response:




The Imus thing sure is a neat parallel. Imus was fired the other day, after many sponsors pulled their advertising.

I have a copy of an April 1st Gazette ( The London Freak Press) dated from sometime back in the 70's, I think. There's an article entitled "Rapist 'pokes' fun at girls". I remember it caused a controversy back then, and I bet people promised and said all the things that are being promised and said today.

As I said before, you can find out who the advertisers were, and are, in the Gazette, and start telling them about how your going to organize a boycott of their products and services, or, you can continue to bring a knife to a gun fight.