Right-Wing Apparatchiks Must Also Be Questioned
Letter to the Editors
Like Ross G. Douthat ’02, I am disturbed that the Graduate School of Design has appointed “an apparatchik from a totalitarian state [Castro’s Cuba]” to be a visiting professor. However, the existence of a double standard that forgives the collaboration of leftists while anathemizing rightists is not at all obvious to me. During the Cold War, scholars who collaborated with right-wing dictatorships were welcome at Harvard. (Tellingly, in 1968, the University granted an honorary doctorate to Mohammed Reza Pahlevi, the shahanshah of Iran.)
Even today, officials within the ruling political machine of Singapore —a “soft”-authoritarian right-wing police state that holds political prisoners without trial and engages in grandiose social engineering—receive frequent invitations to speak at Harvard, with only the faintest opposition in the background.
Steve M. Kim ’03
Mar. 4, 2002