Sometime before 10 this morning, some foul beast of a man, possibly aided by others, took all available copies of the Daily Nexus from at least 10 of the racks on campus and threw them in trash bins nearby.

By our count, at least 2,393 copies of the newspaper were thrown out before most readers would be able to grab a copy. It could be hundreds more. That’s roughly 21 percent of our daily printing run. This dim-witted brute didn’t even have the decency to recycle all that paper.

Vandalism. Theft. Most heinous of all, censorship.

Wanton destruction of public information will not go unpunished. There’s a small note in the staff box – where each of the crew who work to put this paper out every school day are given due credit – that says “Single copies are free; additional copies cost $1.00.”

There is a price for this symptom of severe social derangement. It’s about $2,392, less a dollar for each additional perpetrator.

Imagine the emotional trauma of Juan, 19, when his friends asked, “Did you see our birthday message in the Nexus?”

Everyone mourns the loss of the Wednesday Hump, which is specially engineered to make midweek seem much more tolerable than it actually is.

The students who expressed their views on the opinions page must feel bereft of their voices in the campus — all because some retromingent felt the need to squelch it.

Thomas Jefferson once wrote that if he could not have both newspapers and governments, he would, without hesitation, choose newspapers.

A public that is not informed of the local happenings has no power to change its community. Knowledge drives public action. The miscreant who pulled this off has denied the students and all readers a critical element of living free.

Presumably, those responsible for the actions didn’t grasp the magnitude of their actions. On the off-chance any skulking half-wit did understand, then these apes are as cruel as they are stupid.

Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Michael Young has already condemned this reckless criminality as “both a violation of the rules against theft and the rules of the university.” He should be commended for this and we can only hope the UCPD will follow suit.

The vermin who executed this half-brained scam must be caught and punished. There should be hell to pay when a free press is gagged.

To protect the news and the integrity of your voices in the opinion page, we have reprinted these two sections in today’s newspaper.

Because this act of vigilante imbecility affects all of our readers, we ask that if you or anyone you know has any information regarding Wednesday morning’s mass theft of the Daily Nexus, please stop by and see us under Storke Tower or call us at 893-2691.