Four years ago next May, a small group of earnest, political-minded Harvard undergraduates organized a mock Democratic convention which drew several hundred students to the New Lecture Hall and held them there through two hot turbulent evenings. To a University where undergraduate politics is so noticably lacking, a breath of national politics, especially in a year of Presidential election, brought added enthusiasm both to those who found public issues fascinating and to those who merely longed for a chance to trade ballots, swing delegations, and break deadlocks. The few hard-working organizers provided excellent entertainment, a platform was perfunctorily adopted, and with the "nomination" of candidates, national politics at Harvard was adjourned until the following autumn.
News that a repetition of the 1924 convention is planned for this spring will bring pleasure to the few who recall the excitement of that occasion. But more pleasing, and more worth while, is the active and long preparation planned by the Democratic Club this winter. This organization--not strictly partisan in spite of its name--has voluntarily undertaken the task of giving the University a course in contemporary United States politics. Already two public lectures have been given under its auspices; and how comes the announcement that three United States Senators and a former Cabinet member have accepted speaking appointments. Among this list of speakers, appropriately enough, is Senator Carter Class of Virginia, who was the "nominee" of the mock convention in 1924.
National politics, except in the months of Presidential campaigns, seldom makes any dent upon Harvard undergraduate life. Even in the fall of 1924, the student's participation in the campaign consisted more in torchlight processions and belligerent and meaningless statements to the press that in cool consideration of the issues involved. One debate at the Union was the only serous event which brought any large attendance, and a number of speeches at the Liberal Club completed the educational side of the campaign.
Hence it is all the more commendable in the Democratic Club that it has made successful efforts to bring to the University prominent political leaders to speak on important issues. That there is an ever-ready audience for such speakers has already been evidenced. Absence of undergraduate politics comes as grateful relief to observers of American colleges of today; but a popular course in national politics, especially when in spired by the students themselves, performs a worthwhile function in under graduate life.