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To the Editors of the Crimson:
We, the nameless and faceless multitudes of GUERRILLA, being avid consumers of journalism of all colors, could not help noticing that the editorial of January 21st entitled "Forlorn Echoes" concerned to a large extent our actions and intention.
It may fairly be said, first of all, that the points made in the editorial are well taken. That the issue of longer library hours is trivial in the larger scheme of things is undeniable. This is made obvious in the contrast of this minor issue with the issue of American imperialism in El Salvador that appeared in an accompanying editorial. Even in the smaller scheme of things that constitutes Harvard University, the issue is relatively insignificant, as is clear from the issue of institutional sexism that was raised in yet another accompanying editorial.
However, the doubts expressed in the editorial about the actions of GUERRILLA manifest something of a misunderstanding of the role and raison d'etre of our organization. This we hope to make clear in what follows.
When GUERRILLA was formed, it was meant to be an ad hoc committee to the Student Assembly. It was intended to provide an alternative means of assuring the enactment of Assembly resolutions. This formal association was never realized, but the issues that GUERRILLA adopts are still informally linked to those that happen to catch the attention of the Assembly. As long as the Assembly continues to be ineffective in resolving such issues as longer library hours, guerrilla will be at least partly occupied in providing the muscle, if not the brains, to bring about effective resolutions. Such was the case in the issue in question.
Furthermore, it is generally assumed that the Student Assembly occupies itself with issues that now concern students. Even if GUERRILLA were not closely linked to the Assembly, and such links are likely to become progressively looser, it could thus use the Assembly as a reasonably accurate monitor of student opinion.
GUERRILLA is a relative infant, terrible though it may be, on the campus political scene, and it thus has not had time to develop a dynamic of its own. It is still primarily responsive to such influences as the Assembly and immediate student concerns. Issues that have the potential of exciting or inspiring any sort of interest on campus are rare, and GUERRILLA has assumed part of the responsibility of insuring that those issues are resolved as they arise. Eventually, GUERRILLA will develop the initiative necessary to create issues and inflame passions, to move Harvard students to act, but to expect all this of an organization that is not yet two months old seems perhaps excessive. Hold your breath.
Galvanized Undergraduates for Effective Reinforcement and Response to Ignored but Legitimate Legislative Action [GUERRILLA]
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