To the Editors of The Crimson:
I haven't written The Crimson since I was a freshman in 1947, but, on a brief visit to Cambridge recently. I read your item about the response of the Gay Students Association to statements by Edward Pattullo, director of the Center for Behavioral Sciences. I hope the GSA will not be alone in its objection to Mr. Pattullo's Pattullo's suggesting that, to the extent that homosexuality is environmentally controlled, society has an interest in discouraging it. In societies whose survival depended on the manufacture of sufficient warriors to go die in battle for the good of the tribe, this might be a reasonable argument. Religious attitudes and strictures deriving from this requirement in ancient Israel and elsewhere vex us even now.
But in a world where overpopulation threatens to destroy the environment even if overcrowding does not first trigger a nuclear holocaust, this attitude is insane, particularly from a social scientist. I don't know what Mr. Pattullo actually does, but his title suggests to me, as I cam certain it will to the general public, that this man is only slightly less exalted than a dean, whose pronouncements represent august academic judgment based on careful thought and research
Professor shockley did little damage to Stanford with his racist theories because he is a physicist and was perceived as politicking outside his field of expertise, but our situation compares to the chairman of the Astronomy Department announcing the world is flat. In a free academic community, Mr. Pattullo's right to his opinion, without fear of reprimand or censorship, is sacred. But, in the University, of which all others in English America are limitations, I would hope for some prompt, emphatic, and responsible disavowals and rejoinders from someone besides the Gay Students Association and peckerwoods like me. I would contend that our society's survival and other interests would be better served by the toleration or even encouragement of homosexuality and any other mode of recreational sex that discharges libidinal energies without occasioning procreation. Suffice that it would be regrettable if an unchallenged utterance by someone whose title suggests that he ought to know, results in a public perception that the University has adjourned to the encampment of Jerry Falwell. Dwight Benton Minnich '51