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The Mail SJP and the 'Crimson'

By Laszlo PASZTOR Jr. cochairman

(The letter below is reprinted in full, with one exception. We have altered a sentence identifying a member of the CRIMSON who was charged before the CRR by a member of SJP. The student has asked that his name not be reported-a practice which the CRIMSON follows at the request of any defendant. -ed)

To the Editors of the CRIMSON:

I think it noble of the CRIMSON to publish Arthur Waldron's letter a full eight days after he personally submitted it to you for publication Miss Day's article. "Cancelled Teach-In Lacked Speakers. Not Protection" to which Mr. Waldron's letter addresses itself appeared May 4th. Such biased treatment is consistent with past treatment Students for a Just Peace has received from the CRIMSON Moreover, Miss Day's response to Mr. Waldron's letter is clearly in line with the general CRIMSON policy of blatant distortion and outright falsification of news in its coverage of SJP activities as well as the activities of other campus organizations with an alternative philosophy. Indeed Miss Day was correct in reporting that we cancelled our second Counter Teach-In because of the lack of speakers. No one denies this. But why speakers refused to come to Harvard was not brought out in Miss Day's article. Two speakers, one from the White House, not Professor Kissinger incidentally, and another from the Pentagon refused outright to come to Harvard because they feared that the University would not take any substantial measures to prevent a repetition of the previous disruption. Moreover, the University's failure to extend apologies to the first group of speakers indeed reaffirmed to SJP that the University was acting in bad faith with us and thus indirectly in bad faith with our invited guests. So when three out of five speakers refused our invitations and with no hope that the University was intending to protect the rights of the remaining two speakers we decided to cancel our program. Also Miss Day was correct in alleging that we did not discuss "protection" as such with the University. But indeed we did discuss the prevention of a recurrence of the disruption with Professor Cox. As Miss Day knows, when the University refused us the right to check bursar's cards at our second Counter Teach-In and when it refused us the right to bar bullhorns from the second event, we felt the situation sufficiently hopeless to cut off our discussions with Professor Cox.

As for the question whether or not we indeed had two speakers committed to speak at our second event. Miss Day's reporting was anything but fair. If Mr. Humes from the State Department did actually deny that he had been scheduled for our second Counter Teach-In, it was probably because he was not sure whether or not he could make the event. When I contacted him he told me to talk to his secretary the next day to check his schedule, which I did. According to his secretary he was free for the scheduled date so we made a tentative agreement that he would come Miss Day knew that it had been Mr. Humes' secretary who had confirmed his speaking engagement Miss Day never contacted the secretary to find out whether or not she had confirmed Mr. Humes' commitment.

Furthermore, Miss Day in the practice of "fair and unbiased" reporting quoted me in her article as saying that the University "was treating us (SJP) as some kind of nude niggers." I never said that. What I did say was that in the Harvard Administration there are liberals who would have no qualms about calling out the National Guard to insure one black student's right to attend an all white segregated school in the South. Moreover, it is ironic that those very same liberals will not fight for SJP's right of free speech at Harvard Now it is we who are being treated as the new niggers. This is what I said in a context quite different from the CRIMSON report.

I should add that this practice of malicious slander and falsification by the CRIMSON has been its general policy in its coverage of our activities. Mr. Caploe in his coverage of our first Counter Teach-In presented so many half-truths that I cannot possibly cover them all here I have just described Miss Day's slanders. Mr. Evan Thomas in his article, "As Yet Unnamed Professor May Face Discipline Soon" on May 7th alleged that I was the student filing charges against a certain University professor for his disruption of our Counter Teach-In. Mr. Thomas made this false claim in spite of the fact that I directly told him that I was not the complainant. Finally, Mr. Magalif in his coverage of the CRR hearings presented a totally one sided picture of the proceedings. In his description of one of the hearings in which I was a complainant Mr. Magalif chose to report the testimony of one of the defendant's witnesses who claimed that there existed personal animosity between the defendant and myself Mr. Magalif never reported that we had lengthy film evidence which conclusively showed the defendant disrupting. After Mr. Caploe's calumnies against SJP and after an incident in which a CRIMSON reporter tried to impersonate Arthur Waldron in order to find out where our speakers were lodging I warned the CRIMSON that I would not tolerate such abuse. So far only one reporter. Mr. Sam Goldhaber and until he changed his mind, Mr. Magalif, has given us anything resembling fair reporting. I hereby announce that I will not give out any news stories to Mr. Caploe, Miss Day. Mr. Thomas, or Mr. Magalif. It is ironic that one of the students SJP is prosecuting as a disrupter is [a member of the CRIMSON.] To deny free speech not only means to shout down what a man says but also to misrepresent what he says. The CRIMSON's treatment of our organization has been just as vicious a denial of our free speech as was the disruption by radicals in Sanders Theatre.

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