Faculty ROTC Meeting Will Not Hear Students
Dean Ford has refused to allow representatives of Students for a Democratic Society to sit in the Dec. 3 Faculty meeting to express their opposition to ROTC.
In a letter to Ford the SDS Anti-War Committee said that "it is an absurdity that the question of ROTC's retention may be considered at a meeting from which virtually all those who have voiced opposition to ROTC are excluded."
Ford insisted that University regulations limit attendance "to persons covered by the statute governing voting rights, and to occasional visiting scholars included by special invitation."
Hilary W. Putnam, professor of Philosophy, will present a resolution to abolish ROTC at the meeting. In a short reply to the SDS request, Ford implied that more opposition speakers were unnecessary.
"With respect to your statement of this morning, let me say only that I do not consider discussions by this Faculty 'absurd,' especially since many other groups, including SDS, have, on their own, already discussed the ROTC issue," he wrote.
Because the letter to Ford was signed only "The SDS Anti-War Committee" and gave no return address, Ford's reply never left his office until last night, when the CRIMSON showed the reply to Michael Kazin '70, one of the organizers of the ROTC protests. Kazin said, "For obvious reasons we didn't expect him to let us in."
SDS will hold a rally on the steps of University Hall during the Faculty meeting. Kazin said the rally would have gone on even if Ford had permitted representatives of SDS to join the meeting.
"The demonstration is to rally support for our position, not to protest the Dean's action," he said. SDS will remain outside the building, he said, and make no attempt to enter the building or the meeting.
The letter to Ford said that "no one at Harvard has the right to decide to maintain ROTC on campus in view of what ROTC-trained officers are doing in Vietnam and elsewhere." However, Kazin said that he thought the faculty would not vote to abolish ROTC.