Pill- Periled Females Invited to Breakfast
No longer will dishevelled girls have to stumble out of Harvard Houses early in the morning with empty stomachs.
The decision last Wednesday by the Committee on Houses allowing girls to provide sunshine and sip their OJ in Harvard's dining halls shows that Harvard has truly gone the way of all flesh.
Recently, the committee handed the decision of parietals regulations over to the individual houses. To date, Quincy, Lowell, Eliot, and Winthrop have instituted 24-hour parietals, and it should be only a matter of time before the other houses follow suit.
When Alan Heimert, Master of Eliot House, was asked for reasons for the new breakfast ruling, he replied, "I don't know; maybe because it's cold."
One Harvard senior, however, didn't think the new ruling was so hot.
"Harvard breakfasts are bad enough without having to look at scraggly, book-bagged girls." Bookbags?
Certainly, this is a minority opinion. A Harvard freshman, unhampered by problems of the draft and a job, eagerly blurted out: "Wow, it's great! Now I have something to look forward to on next year's menu."
A Senate subcommittee began hearings Wednesday which may be pregnant with importance for many Harvard and Radcliffe students.
The hearings opened with testimony from two doctors who said that birth control pills may cause a wide range of diseases- including fatal blood clotting cervix cancer, and breast cancer.
Despite these allegations, the University Health Services (UHS) will continue to give the pill to married women (Massachusetts law prohibits unmarried women from obtaining them) until either the American Cancer Society or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) decides that it is harmful, a UHS spokesman said today.
Dr. Robert W. Kistner, assistant professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Medical School and a witness at the hearings, scoffed at the studies linking oral contraceptives with cancer.
"The pill is safe," he testified. "Taking the pill is a great deal safer than having a normal pregnancy, but of course not as safe as continence," he added.
Dr. Hugh J. Davis, co-founder of the-Johns Hopkins contraception research center, told the subcommittee that "breast cancers have been induced in at least five different species of animals by treatment with the same synthetic hormones being marketed in oral contraceptives."
Every agent shown to cause cancer in humans also has been shown to cause cancer in animals, Davis said. "There is no reason to presume that the single exception will turn out to be oral contraceptives," he added.
Kistner said that in the ten years since the pill appeared on the market, the FDA had reported only one case of cervix cancer and one case of breast cancer in the millions of women using the pill.