The Associated Press reports from Hartford, Connecticut, that Arthur B. O'Keefe, a seventeen-year old freshman of Trinity College, has been suspended from the college for what the authorities call "a violation of rules regarding drinking." Discounting the indefinite phrasing of the charge, which might cover anything from sipping a cocktail to climaxing an evening of drunken driving, assault and battery, and window smashing by setting fire to the college chapel in a fit of alcoholic pique, O'Keefe's suspension brings into the limelight one of the most disturbing aspects of Prohibition as it relates to the American college.
Theoretically no American institution, except the jail and the reformatory school, should knowingly harbor persistent violators of the law. Nevertheless, thousands of students are daily violating the Jones Law, in a large number of cases in the knowledge of and with acquiescence of their faculty. At Harvard, drinking is by no means considered a crime by the dean's office, and action is never taken unless the drinking leads to something for which the undergraduate would be punished for even if he led a strictly sober life--i.e., bad marks, disrupting influence, acts of extreme physical violence, etc.
There are few better tests of the way America looks at its Prohibition Laws than is to be found in the attitude of such a body as the Harvard faculty, representing as it does, so high intellectual and social strata.