Syracuse University has ditched its use of a “kiss cam” at football games after a lone letter to the editor claimed it was inappropriate when colleges are trying to stamp out sexual assault.
It all started last week, when Syracuse student Steve Port sent a letter to The Post-Standard complaining about what he saw on the kiss cam during a game two weeks ago against Wake Forest.
“During the kiss cam break at the Syracuse game last weekend I saw some horrifying behavior that was met with cheers and applause from the crowd. It made me sick to my stomach,” wrote Port. “The cameraman … scanned into the student section where a young man and a young woman were shown. Clearly not a couple, the male student pleaded his case for a kiss on the big screen while the female adamantly shook her head no. So what does this guy do? He grabs her head and shoves his tongue down her throat, the crowd cheers.”
This wasn’t just fun and games, Port said, but could actually be a felony.
“The instances I witnessed at the game encourage and condone sexual assault and a sense of male entitlement, at best,” he said. “And they are an actual instance of assault, at worst.” Port concluded with a call for university officials to review what happened and consider the “ramifications” of the kiss cam.
Syracuse has taken Port to heart: During last Saturday’s game against Central Michigan University, the kiss cam was nowhere to be seen. The school says it has suspended the camera while it assesses Port’s complaint, but it’s possible that the camera is gone for good.
Now, Port claims he wasn’t trying to destroy the kiss cam, even though his letter clearly implies it should be eliminated.
“Honestly, I wasn’t out to kill the kiss cam,” Port told The Associated Press. “I was just out to raise an important issue that I saw happening and that’s important to me. I’ve always kind of been a little put off by it anyway, but never witnessed an actual act of – oh, my God, this woman is saying no and it didn’t matter.”
The canceled kiss cam comes just a week after the New York Mets ran into a similar problem. The team had a practice of showing two opposing players on the Kiss Cam, but has now suspended the practice after some complained it was homophobic. (RELATED: MLB Fun Police Kill Long-Standing Kiss Cam Joke Because Nothing Is Sacred Anymore)