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Trying to toss the ball between the College and the United States Senate, the metropolitan newspapers pulled a series of errors this week-end reminiscent of the balmier days of the Brooklyn Dodgers. Falsely reporting the Senate's resolution to the effect that Congress would welcome foreign governments on Harvard soil September, the journals drew a picture of the University defending with gun and pike the extra-territoriality of the Yard against unwarranted intrusion from above. Fortunately Jerome Greene and the Senate kept their heads above water, for the Senate resolution contains no hint of taking over the Harvard reception committee, but, as Mr. Greene pointed out, is a gracious recognition of the Tercentenary celebration.
As the founding of Harvard College marked the beginning of higher education in America, it is only fitting for the government to play some official part in the festivities. The seed which the Puritans planted in 1636 has grown and blossomed, so that not just at Cambridge but all over the country is a group of universities that forms one of the strongest bulwarks of free government. Despite the temporary encroachment of petty politicians, bent on perverting the true function of education for purposes of propaganda and personal aggrandisement, democratic government is unlikely to land on the rocks for good as long as the spirit of learning prevails. It is definitely encouraging, then, that Congress has officially recognized the importance of higher education to the welfare of the general body politic.
While the official delegation is here, the attraction of public figures such as Roosevelt, Garner, and the like will momentarily draw the lime light away from the graduates and scholars that make up the bulk of the participants. But this should not change the character of the proceedings from a meeting of learned men to a stamping ground of political compaigners. The rigors of the presidential race will leave the field to scholarship once the official benediction has been bestowed. No one need fear that the Senate will break up the celebration by recognizing Harvard's historic significance on the American scene, though the metropolitan press may regard the Tercentenary theatre as the seat of a war between Congress and the Corporation.
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