Billet Bataille: II

All the usual opportunities for scattered oaths and point-bank shots at a stationary target will be taken from mis-seated undergraduates when the Council ticket committee passes out its announced poll tomorrow night. By what seems to be a friendly agreement between the Harvard Athletic Association and the student body's representatives, the results of the balloting will determine next year's tickets--all of which gives the voter the responsibility to stop howling and think.

The choice will be simple one: should dateless students have preference over their paired-up friends? Behind this transparent question, however, lies a historical vista of squabbling precedents and eternal unhappiness; and if the ballots are marked on the basis of this year's hysteria only, by 1948 hordes will be "blasting the H.A.A. system" again.

Back of the theory of the cheering section lies a deep-rooted feeling that Harvard men deserve better seats than visiting females, and that anyone preferring to sit a girl should share the misery of her view of the game. Arguments that an all-male section cheers louder or presents a solid, threatening front to the opposition are also frequently used.

What this doctrine fails to taken into account, and what has led to the recent explosion, is that a ticket system like that now in vogue takes little cognizance of class standing and keeps an artificial caste hierarchy intact for four years of everyone's college life. The person who took girls to football games as a Freshman and is still escorting them there as a Senior has approached little nearer the ideal seat by his academic efforts. The places he wants are being taken by Freshman and graduate students and others who sit alone and like it.

The only distribution method which makes absolutely certain that everyone gets a good seat in the Stadium at some time in his college career--and correspondingly a mediocre seat at some other time--is the other proposal on the ballot : elimination of the artificial "cheering section" and of the preferential one-seat application.


Under this system members of the Senior Class, with or without dates, get the best seats in the Stadium except for the players and their guests and certain special football alumni and officials. The Juniors fall next-in line, and so on down to the Freshmen, who presumably would sit between the 10 and the 20. One important co-improvement that must come with this now plan is the elimination of the section now devoted to "season tickets," which are seats on the other side of the 50 sold quietly in the spring of every year to on-undergraduate.

Simplicity and absolute fairness--simplicity for the H.A.A. and fairness in the long run for every ticket buyer--are the advantages that appear immediately with the plan of placing by classes and of equal priority for single and two-seat applications. Bottled in bond misogynists excluded, this second proposal on the Council's ballot should sweep the field.