TRIVIAL STRIKES AT ROTC

The Mail

To the Editors of the CRIMSON:

While the point in your editorial on the ROTC program that no granting of academic credit is necessary to permit ROTC to carry out its recruiting function is well taken, this admission also states that your proposal for discrediting the program would serve little purpose other than soothing your sense of righteous indignation. As I will show, given this admission, your other arguments are trivial.

To the objection the courses should not be allotted credit because of low academic value, one must look at the example cited in your feature article of the 15th. Looking up "Marine Navigation" in the catalogue, it is stated that it mainly duplicates Astronomy 2. Why no move to get rid of Astronomy 2 as a credit course? Unless you plan to argue that all courses for credit be of some minimum academic standard, singling out ROTC courses smacks of more than a little hypocrisy.

As to the issue of who the ROTC department is responsible to, the Dean or the Pentagon, unless you are asserting that non answerability means non-cooperation, this becomes a meaningless technicality. As it is admitted in the article of the 15th that there has been a great deal of cooperation, the harm would seem to be more to your aesthetic sense of organization than to the integrity of the University.

Since the official title of the head of the ROTC program is 'Professor of Military Science," it is difficult to see how this devalues the rank of a Professor of Physics any more than the awarding of an M.D. can devalue the worth of a Ph.D. As the two titles are not the same, it is difficult to see how the worth of one can affect the worth of the other.

By referring again to the article of the 15th, we see that the security clearance required for the two courses is "routine" and therefore nonimal rather than substantive. As yet, no harm harm has been shown as being attributable to it and thus the objection must be classed as a technicality.

My final point is simply this: If you wish to dispose of ROTC as a protest to the Vietnam war as was implied in the article of the 15th, please have the editorial courage to say so and defend the argument on those grounds. Your inaccuracies and quibbling on the technicalities of University integrity serve only to devalue the worth of your editorial page and obscure the real issue you are concerned with. Ronald T. Luke '70

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