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. . .Cause for Modest Proposal

By Davida F. Mcdonald

ONE night during my first year, I had a horrifying dream. In this dream, a group of women invaded a great hall where the members of every final club at Harvard were eating dinner. Using UZI submachine guns, we systematically eliminated these men, cornered the last cowering club member, and were about to dispose of him when I awoke.

Naturally, I was upset by the dream--especially by the pathetic expression on the lone survivor's face. But lately I have begun to re-evaluate this revulsion. Maybe I had stumbled upon a solution to the problem of the lack of a women's center on this campus.

The plan: to systematically dispose of the members of the Fly Club, coerce the last survivor into signing over the building before disposing of him, and then use the building for a much-needed women's center. After all, The Fly Club is in an excellent location, has a beautiful lawn, and has ample parking space.

ONCE the Fly Club is signed over to the appropriate people, inspection, cleaning and renovation will rid the building of its sordid past. We will decorate the walls with inspirational photographs and empowering feminist quotes, hold daily events centering around women and provide the support and encouragement that is sometimes lacking on this campus.

I presented this idea to some women at Harvard in order to get their reactions. "Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!" said Ellie Y. Lee '92.

Some women, however, questioned the morality of the plan.

"The only problem I have with this [plan] is that murder goes against my moral beliefs," said Bridget C. Asay '92. "[Why not] use tranquilizer darts and deep freeze them for 1000 years? Then we'll defrost them."

This is an excellent suggestion. But what if the members want the building returned to them after they have thawed out? Future generations of women will have become very attached to the building over the span of 1000 years and will not want to relinquish it. We must do something more permanent.

Other women suggested a change in method. Rachel K. Laser '91 said that exterminating members of the Fly Club "would be an unnecessary action" and that "we should have a talk with the members' girlfriends and have them convince their boyfriends to give us the money [for a women's center]."

We should take this suggestion under advisement, since we have never thought of taking money from club members. However, the Fly building itself has many attributes that are not available elsewhere. And it's very hard to find enough space to build a women's center on this campus. Perhaps we can compromise by taking the members' money and the building.

"Well, I'd say, I wouldn't kill them, but I'd definitely oust them because I think the women's center is such a better idea," said Gabrielle C. Burton '92, another student who wants to alter the plan.

But if we oust club members, what can we do with them? Rehabilitation is too tedious and painful. Also, we have no guarantee that the new and improved ex-members would not revert to their evil ways. The importance of our quest allows no room for error.

That may make the plan "just a mite harsh" in the words of Debbie M. Gurner '91, who added that the scheme is "not out of the question."

I will grant the plan is harsh, since the penalty for getting caught is stiff. But jail time is a small sacrifice for a bona-fide women's center. When released on probation, we will return to Harvard to use the women's center. In the worst scenario, martyrdom will only make us stronger.

DESPITE the severity of the plan, Dayle Delancey '92 said that, sadly, taking over the Fly Club "is the only way that we'll get a women's center with the way that things are going now."

Filling out questionnaires, forming coalitions and committees with students and administrators, and then seeking a suitable location has not worked. The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination's recent decision against integration of the Fly Club has only augmented the direness of our circumstances. Desperate times deserve desperate measures.

We must actively recruit more women into our group, stake out the building, learn the comings and goings of the members, and initiate our plan.

And even if my dream doesn't become reality, we'll certainly have a good time trying.

"Counter to my morals and better judgement, I think [disposing of the members of the Fly Club] would relieve many inner aggressions," said Meg H. Robertson '92.

"It's not the solution, but it would feel great."

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