The Path to Public Service at SEAS


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The 1937 parietal rule concerning House guests has gone into effect, and with it goes a liberal spirit that is the direct antithesis of the in-famous "two women" regulation. It incorporates a practicable philosophy worthy of the Harvard tradition.

A college, like any other small unit in society is open to attacks from without. This small concession to the outside world admittedly has little beyond vague nuisance value to the liberal, self-disciplined undergraduate majority. Particularly in view of the recent stormy history and stringent regulation, the price is not exhorbitant and the return is impressive. In this way the University has protection against the turbulent, ill-disciplined minority who might otherwise raise havoc with its fair name and hence with the much-prized liberties of the majority. As with any truly liberal law, the majority, in this case most of the undergraduates, are legislating through their representatives, the University authorities, to preserve the largest possible measure of independence under a given set of circumstances.

As for the rule itself, it must be tried and tested against the whetstone of student experience. Indications are not lacking that it will be administered reasonably, equitably, and tactfully. Some student disapproval may be provoked by such a requirement as a twenty-four hour advance notice in one House, but these details are not set in concrete and may be whittled to suit student convenience.

The rule needs no apology. If last year's troublesome history of rigidity be recalled, there can be no doubt that it is a step forward, and certainly in advance of the public mores. It may, therefore, be accepted with good grace and satisfaction.

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