Against the Minority Clause


To the Editors of The Crimson:

We, as a solid minority of the voting members of the Executive Committee of the Harvard-Radcliffe Democratic Club, strongly oppose ratification of the proposed student body constitution, and feel it is our duty to dispel the aura of unanimity that surrounds the Executive Committee's endorsement as reported on the first page of Monday's Crimson.

We, the minority, disapprove of the attempt by the Constitutional Convention to create special voting minority seats in any student assembly, as we feel this presupposes an inability of Harvard students to elect representatives according to merit and without regard to race, that it violates a longstanding constitutional tradition of equal representation of each elector, and that it constitutes a patronizing gesture toward the members of those minority groups who are proud of their ability to recognize and protect their interests without special favors.

In addition, we have serious reservations about the funding provisions of the proposed constitution, and feel that the doubts that have been raised by other groups cannot be clearly answered by the text of the document.

These two flaws, in our opinion, and especially the former, render this constitution unacceptable without prior amendment.


As Democrats, we feel that this is a legitimately non-partisan issue, and one on which Democrats may justifiably disagree. Our position is in no way inconsistent with the platform of the party or the public views of the President. In fact, we consider ourselves the preserver of the ideals of equality of representation and free election on which our Democratic Party was founded. Robert Guy Erwin '80   Dana Leifer '80   Charles Elson '81