The Pornography Problem

NP1.jpg

Apparently the New Pornographers, a Vancouver indie rock band, will not be allowed to play at Calvin College, an evangelical liberal arts school in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This is because people are too obtuse to understand the name of the band. Really.

According to an article by John Serba in the Grand Rapids Press:

The New Pornographers concert at Calvin College has been canceled because of the band’s name.

The college released a statement explaining, “after weeks of discussion and consideration, the irony of the band’s name was impossible to explain to many. The band’s name, to some, is mistakenly associated with pornography. Consequently, Calvin, to some, was mistakenly associated with pornography. Neither the college nor the band endorses pornography.”

Well that’s reassuring.

Calvin booked the band as part of the school’s fall concert series. The New Pornographers were scheduled to play at the school on October 15. The college explained that,

The band, The New Pornographers, makes good, thoughtful music, and we invited them to Calvin College based on their artistic merit. The decision to invite this band fits our rubric of engaging culture through a Christian lens.

So be it, but apparently many members of the Calvin community objected to the band’s name because, you know, pornography is bad. According to Ken Heffner, the school’s director of student activities, “For some people, the name, it hurts them, it confuses them. They wonder why would we ever associate the college with that word.”

Band leader Carl Newman choose the name after watching a 1966 Japanese film called The Pornographers.

In 2004 Death Cab For Cutie performed at Calvin College. It appears that no one was then concerned with a loss of life associated with a vehicle for hire. [Image via]

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer