John Fox, Publisher of the Boston Post, charged the "management" of Harvard with education but no common sense. In the first of a series of editorials Fox said Tuesday that "Harvard suffers from a festering sore, which is cancerous in nature."
Fox charged that this "sore" has disturbed alumni and administration only slightly and that the Overseers have "prescribed as a remedy a salve."
"The name of this salve," Fox continued, "is academic freedom."
The Post article, a signed editorial run on the front page, was titled "Communism at Harvard." The statement concluded, "Everyone knows the respect or even veneration with which an eighteen-year-old boy regards a teacher whose reputation is world-wide, and whose actual knowledge and ability in a particular field may be second to that of no one else on earth."
Fox said that when teachers decline to answer certain questions about their loyalty, the parents of such eighteen-year-old students have justification for being disturbed.
He cited as an example the following exchange: "Have you over traitorously sold information to an enemy nation, the sale of which might result in the enslavement of the United States?" and the teacher answers, 'I refuse to answer that question because if I told the truth my answer might tend to make me a criminal.'"
This question has never been asked of a Harvard faculty member, however, and so no teacher in the College has had occasion to refuse to answer.
In his background on the College, Fox wrote: "Harvard is a great educational institution; the greatest in the world we think. Harvard was founded by free men. Harvard's growth was made possible by free men."
Fox distinguished between two kinds of Americans. "Most of us are of one kind," he said. "In response to the question, 'Are you, or have you ever been a member of an organization, membership in which would make you a traitor to your country?' we would indignantly, honestly, and without hesitation say, 'No!' The other class--thank God they are in the miniscule minority--would answer the question by sneering defiantly, confident of the protection given them by that very Constitution which they would destroy."
In subsequent articles, Fox will tell what Harvard alumni who are alarmed by this "sore" in the College are doing about it."