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The Draft: a B at Harvard, a B at Podunk

The Mail


To the Editors of the CRIMSON:

Although this is but one of a vast number of pressing problems centering around the present Draft situation, it occurs to me that a grave error has been perpetrated concerning the "upper half of your class" deferment now at least theoretically being employed by Draft boards throughout the country.

Do Harvard and the other "leading education institutions consider their scholastic ratings and requirements so unimportant that they can, without as much as a faint murmur of protest, allow them to be arbitrarily placed but our Draft officials on a common level with those of every other college regardless of their varying standards.

Is it not conceivable that B grades indicate greater academic accomplishment here than at Podunk U? Does not a man's standing in the upper half of his class at Harvard, or Yale, or the University of Chicago involve at least a bit more prestige, value, or what you will than a similar rating at Milliville State Teachers College and Athletic Association?

Yet as far as we know, those people most influential in the formation of Draft legislation are totally unaware, or unconcerned, or both, that some colleges have low scholastic requirements and other high ones.

How often we've heard that "Harvard Bs are worth As in many other colleges. How often we've heard that "It isn't everyone who can go to one of the Big Three." But when the Day of Judgement arrives (and it's got us but the neck already) we find these distinctions singularly absent. It's stimulating from a sanguinary point of view to note that we are considered fitting infantry-bait, and when we're called we'll all assume a suitably docile role; but the present lack of consistency, scholastic ranking-wise does deserve review. The dire need for armed manpower does not necessitate jettisoning that which we have been brought up to believe is a basic fact. A. T. Sawyer Jr. '53

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