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Publish Interruptus
Those progressive folks at Tribune Newspapers know what's good for you, and what's not. Sex is not.

When the Mesa Community College newspaper, the Legend, produced a four-page special section titled Sex in the 90's, honchos at the Tribune objected to its content and refused to insert it into their paper. Normally, 10,000 copies of the Legend are distributed inside the Tribune to subscribers near the campus. Another 5,000 copies of the Legend, which is printed by the Trib, are distributed on MCC's 23,000-student campus.

Lydia Kearney, Legend editor, says MCC pays the Tribune to insert those 10,000 Legends into the Trib, and the Trib exercised its right to control the content of "advertising."

But the supplement contained absolutely no advertising. What Sex in the 90's contained were thoughtful stories on sexually transmitted diseases, birth control, intimacy, marriage, cyberporn and prostitution. It was produced over a period of months by about 20 Legend staffers, whom Kearney described as "annoyed" at the Tribune's action.

"They felt it should have been printed in its purest form, but that's not always possible," Kearney says. "We made some compromises and thought we made good decisions, because we still have some supplements here that people can pick up.

"I have four daughters, and I want my children to see the section," adds Kearney. "The supplement was done responsibly."

Sex in the 90's did appear in the 5,000 freestanding papers distributed on campus.

Those 10,000 Tribune subscribers opened their Legends to discover a note explaining that the supplement promoted above the paper's flag was not actually in the paper. The note explained how readers could obtain a copy, but that if they did so, they might possibly go blind.

What's Good for the Goose
State Representative Phil Hubbard believes he knows why County Attorney Richard Romley is reluctant to look into Sheriff Joe Arpaio's possibly illegal hiring of an attorney with his share of the county's Jail Enhancement Fund ("Tepid Response Force," February 22). Arpaio's share is supposed to be committed to improving the county jail, but Joe has used the fund to finance legal battles and to buy videos of his TV appearances.

Hubbard remembers Romley using similar state funds in 1991 to hire Steve Twist, an attorney, to lobby the Legislature. Those funds are supposed to be used by Romley to "enhance prosecutorial efforts," but Hubbard says Romley paid his lobbyist to fight a legislative effort to research sentencing practices in Arizona. Hubbard found it outrageous at the time and said so.

A spokesman for Romley couldn't say how Twist was paid, since those records have been purged.

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