Letters to the Editor

Harmful rivalry

March 9, 2010


To the editor:

Much has been made over the Lawrence High School/Free State High School lip dub “controversy.” In hopes of preventing further animosity, we’d like to suggest two lessons to be learned from it.

It’s known that while the FS lip dub was copied (and parodied), the original LHS lip dub was destroyed, but, sadly, how it was destroyed has not been fully disclosed. Yes, audio from LHS’ video was replaced, but more heinous was the insertion of homophobic text boxes over the video. We raise this issue primarily to reveal it, but also to suggest that while the lip dub mess was bad, the persistence of homophobia, particularly in our high schools, is worse.

Equally poisonous to the high school experience, specifically in the arts, is the perpetuation of rivalry. We’d like to believe FSHS was inspired by our video, not challenged by it (as was reported on 2/24 examiner.com). However, the constant back and forth of who did what first and when — or better — is detrimental to all. A creative atmosphere in the arts programs should be marked by informed critique and dialogue, not pointless rivalry.

High school isn’t always a place where every student finds acceptance. However, one thing both videos revealed is the joy created when as many diverse people as possible are involved in a similar endeavor and it’s to the credit of both schools’ film programs they accomplished this.

We hope that the community at large is equally accepting and open to supporting both high schools and all of their students — on and off the screen.

This letter was submitted by Luke McDaneld, Jeff Kuhr and students of Room 125 Productions at LHS.


spaghettiandmeatball 8 years, 2 months ago

Quick note: though the original LHS lip dub was destroyed (as the letter notes) and had to be taken down (losing its 130,000 views and 200+ comments), the students did reupload it. You can see it by going here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iBK9q...

Marcia Epstein 8 years, 2 months ago

This letter highlights a significant concern for our teens - bullying based on homophobia. I'm confused about why the title of this letter did not appear on the list of letters on the ljw homepage today. People need to know that such bullying happens, and that we can work together to make it stop. Some of us are trying to make Lawrence a better place for our youth. If you want to know more, please email me at me@hqcc.lawrence.ks.us

weeslicket 8 years, 2 months ago

i don't know what we are talking about. bbbzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.............. what? eh?

lawrencezombiewalk 8 years, 2 months ago

Although I haven't see the FSHS video, the LHS video is absolutely amazing, and the fact that anyone sabotaged it is heartbreaking. Hopefully these kids will grow up and realize what they're doing to one another.

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