Sunday, April 12, 2009

Harvard and The Marines

The government should provide no funding, including research and student aid on campuses that ban US Government programs like ROTC. But there is no chance the bedwetters in Congress will develop the spine to do so. Barack doesn't really support this--just more empty talk from President BO. ~Bob


Why not give our officers the best education?
By Joseph Kristol and Daniel West

'ROTC must go because we oppose the policies of the United States and we oppose the military that perpetrates them. The lines are clearly drawn; the time to take sides is now."

It was the spring of 1969, and the leaders of the Harvard chapter of Students for a Democratic Society were (with the above statement issued to the student newspaper) agitating to cleanse their campus of "imperialist exploitation." To opponents of the Vietnam War, members of the military -- even students in the Reserve Officers Training Corps -- embodied the policies they despised.

Forty years ago tomorrow, April 9, 1969, this sentiment culminated in a mob of students storming University Hall. Eager to be at the forefront of radical activism, they turned to violent protest. Arsonists torched a Marine Corps classroom, and the administration buckled. ROTC was purged from campus, symbolically repudiating the Vietnam War.

Today, America congratulates itself for having overcome the knee-jerk radicalism of that era. "Support the troops, oppose the war" is the modern battle cry of the antiwar movement. Americans seem to recognize that those in uniform shouldn't be blamed for policies set by elected officials.

But not at Harvard, where ROTC remains officially unwelcome.

The students of 1969 have become the faculty of 2009, and today students who wish to participate in ROTC are forced to train at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. We are pawns in a political chess game. The issue is no longer Vietnam, but President Bill Clinton's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy that bars gays from openly serving in the military. Because of that policy, the university classifies ROTC as a discriminatory organization and has severed all remnants of support.

So Harvard today happily pays for future bankers to take accounting courses at MIT, but refuses to pay for aspiring military officers who take ROTC courses. Since 1994, anonymous donors have generously picked up the tab, providing hundreds of thousands of dollars per year for Harvard's ROTC students.

Sadly, the number of Harvard students who choose military service has dwindled. Harvard, where ROTC was founded in 1916 and which once boasted over 1,000 participants, is now home to only 29 cadets and midshipmen, spread over four years and four branches of service. Recruitment opportunities are deliberately limited, and the student handbook cautions students against joining ROTC, remarking that the program is "inconsistent with Harvard's values." And cadets begin every semester seeking to avoid the professors known to exhibit hostility toward students who wear their uniform to class.

Rather than embracing the mutually beneficial relationship Harvard might share with the military, the faculty prefers to stand in the way of progress, abdicating its responsibility to contribute to one of our nation's most important institutions.. The same Harvard that once produced 10 recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor, and warrior-scholars such as Teddy Roosevelt and John F.. Kennedy, now turns its back on its proud, patriotic history.

But there are reasons to be hopeful that the 40-year exile of ROTC may be drawing to a close. Today, the faculty is out of touch with a student body that is generally supportive of ROTC. The support that both Barack Obama and John McCain expressed during the 2008 presidential campaign for the return of ROTC to elite college campuses showed Harvard's stance to be far from mainstream.

We are also fortunate that Harvard's new president, Drew Faust, has privately praised and met with cadets and midshipmen, and publicly stated her hope that the day ROTC returns to campus is not far off. Though she remains bound by Harvard's discrimination policy, she spoke at last year's commissioning ceremony and expressed her desire to see our numbers grow.

This is encouraging, but it falls short of the appropriate policy: support for the military and those who serve in it, regardless of federal policies. ROTC should be fully and unequivocally welcomed back to Harvard. Accomplishing this would take leadership and courage from President Faust. Perhaps she will be inspired to show this leadership as she joins Gen. David Petraeus in recognizing the ROTC graduates at our commissioning ceremony in June.

Messrs. Kristol and West, seniors at Harvard University, will be commissioned second lieutenants in the United States Marine Corps in June.


  1. Now this policy surprises even me! I thought the illegal president would want to keep ROTC but change it to reflect the Brown Shirts he so desperately wants. (Mr. Obama wants to indoctrinate the children like Hitler, I'm sure.) I guess Mr. Obama goal is to further embarrass America overseas by 'dumbing down' the military so as to achieve poor performances. That way he can keep bad mouthing his adopted country.

  2. This attitude disgusts me to the point of nausea. If I hadn't blown out my knee in high school, one of the branches of the armed forces would have been the path I took out of Welfare.

    As it was, I developed a deep respect for those who serve when I can't.

    And one of the three ways to flip the switch in my head from reasonable adult to near-blinding rage is to display an attitude like the above. Sometimes it makes me regret my love for literature leading me into majoring in English, since that seems to be where a lot of the transnational progressivist idiocy is centered, nowadays.

    We need someone in government who has the kind of respect for our armed forces to stand up and refuse funding to all who refuse access to military recruiters. And the sense of humor and testicular fortitude to remind them of their own devotion to diversity.

  3. If kids want to join the military, or need to because the neo-cons have so destroyed the economy, they can find the recruiting stations on their own. They don't need to be hounded, hunted down and harassed on campus by attack dog sales people who have a monthly quota to fill. If the US wasn't filled with so many mindless mouth breathing war mongers (as seen on this forum), this wouldn't even be an issue.

  4. And if America wasn't sabotaged by so many leftist moonbats, our economy wouldn't be tanking, and we wouldn't be in so much danger from our enemies.

  5. Heroditus Huxley said...
    "And if America wasn't sabotaged..., our economy wouldn't be tanking."

    I agree. Bush sabotaged our economy. Bigtime. This is hardly controversial except among the uninformed and delusional. Republicans have a long history of doing this by the way. Examples, specific and well referenced, provided upon request. Many.

    "George W. Bush surprisingly vulnerable to a challenge from his right. Issues: his soaring deficits; his preferential option for the rich; his sellout of conservative principle to embrace big government; his failure to protect America's borders and control immigration; his cave-in on the assault-gun law; his concessions to the gay Log Cabin Republicans; his refusal to put a stop to race preferences and reverse discrimination; his free-trade zealotry, which has helped to kill one of every eight manufacturing jobs in the United States while creating jobs in China; and, potentially the most explosive, his "quagmire" in Iraq.”
    --Pat Buchanan, Atlantic Monthly, 9/03

    And that was before Bush did most of his damage!

  6. Bush wasn't a leftist moonbat, by any means; however, he did have a huge hand in what's gone wrong. He did, after all, cooperate with him.

    Pat Buchanan makes a few good points, but undercuts his own credibility with his anti-Semitism, and with his head-in-the-sand isolationism. I wish the world were still simple enough that we could go our own way in our own country and ignore the rest of the world, but unfortunately, we are a part of the greater global society. We seem to take on the role of the world's police, for better or worse. Usually worse.

    We haven't had a good, conservative presidential candidate since Ronald Regan. The closest we've come was Mitt Romney, and he was ousted early in the race by a temporary alliance between McCain (who is a RINO and CINO) and Huckabee (who is conservative only on social issues). We likely won't, either, until the Republican party admits that drifting left toward what DC perceives as center is what's lost them the House, Senate, and Presidency.

  7. Heroditus Huxley said...
    "We haven't had a good, conservative presidential candidate since Ronald Regan... We likely won't, either, until the Republican party admits that drifting left toward what DC perceives as center is what's lost them the House, Senate, and Presidency."

    Just keep believing that.

    The GOP is dead in the water until it comes out of the right-wing hinterlands, shuts off the Limbaugh's, Becks and Hannity's and leaves the idiotic, fake rage, teabag tantrum parties behind.

    It'll be a few years until they figure this out. The more the better. The impetus will probably be a desire to not be completely irrelevant anymore. It's cold in those hinterlands.

    If you don't believe me, maybe you'll consider the argument made by conservative David Frum:

    Why Rush is Wrong

    The party of Buckley and Reagan is now bereft and dominated by the politics of Limbaugh. A conservative's lament.

    by David Frum


    "On the one side, the president of the United States: soft-spoken and conciliatory, never angry, always invoking the recession
    and its victims. This president invokes the language of "responsibility," and in his own life seems to epitomize that ideal: He is
    physically honed and disciplined, his worst vice an occasional cigarette. He is at the same time an apparently devoted husband
    and father. Unsurprisingly, women voters trust and admire him.

    And for the leader of the Republicans? A man who is aggressive and bombastic, cutting and sarcastic, who dismisses the
    concerned citizens in network news focus groups as "losers." With his private plane and his cigars, his history of drug dependency
    and his personal bulk, not to mention his tangled marital history, Rush is a walking stereotype of self-indulgence—exactly the image
    that Barack Obama most wants to affix to our philosophy and our party. And we're cooperating! Those images of crowds of
    CPACers cheering Rush's every rancorous word—we'll be seeing them rebroadcast for a long time.

    Rush knows what he is doing. The worse conservatives do, the more important Rush becomes as leader of the ardent remnant.
    The better conservatives succeed, the more we become a broad national governing coalition, the more Rush will be sidelined."


    Until then, enjoy those teabag parties!

  8. Funny. We tried it that way the last election. It failed. Spectacularly.

    And Frum is a CINO--only when it's convenient, and the rest of the world agrees with him.

  9. Holly Chism said...
    "Funny. We tried it that way the last election. It failed. Spectacularly."

    So McCain didn't win because he wasn't far enough to the right? That's your reading of the country? The country voted for a "man with a tan" by such a margin that Obama could have spotted McCain California AND New York and he still would have won. But if only McCain had been further to the right....

    I think that's probably wrong.

    And Frum is a CINO--only when it's convenient...>>

    That's not relevant to the merits of his argument. It's very succinct and contained in his last two sentences above. Can you show where is he wrong in these last two sentences?

    I think he's spot on. Republicans/neo-cons whatever will not become a "broad national governing coalition" by moving further to the right. But it looks like you guys are going to try it so we may get to see what happens! This is exciting.

    Go Palin!

    "A growing number of political scientists, analysts and strategists are making the case for a realignment of political power in the U.S. to a new Democratic majority based on two trends: 1) the increasing numbers of black and Hispanic voters, and 2) a decisive shift away from the Republican Party by the suburban and well-educated constituencies that once formed the backbone of the GOP."

  10. Ok, Folks, Darrel has been the snot sniping from the shadows at everyone since someone sent him my piece, "I'm Tired." Time to smoke this cockroach out from under the refrigerator into the light. Time he was on a level playing field with me. When I sent "I'm Tired," (and on my e-mail responses to folks) I put my name, address, phone number and e-mail address. As below. So, Darrel, have a bit of courage. This is America. Stand up publicly for what you believe. From now on, full name, address, phone and e-mail address on your posts, or I'll reject them & you can find another hobby.

    Robert A. Hall, MEd, CAE
    9023 Columbus Drive
    Apt 2H
    Des Plaines, IL 60016
    Home: 224-567-8011

  11. TARTAN: Stand up publicly for what you believe.>>

    I do that all the time.

    From now on, full name, address, phone and e-mail address on your posts, or I'll reject them & you can find another hobby.>>

    You called me a "bed wetting coward" and challenged me to provide my full name and address, I provided this and now you are requiring I provide all of my personal information on every one of my posts or you will censor my comments. This is a special rule you are requiring only for me and no one else.

    This is your "level playing field."

    You know, on our forum people don't have to have their comments "approved" they just post them. And they can use their real name, or not. It works really well. Freedom of speech. Seems a little communist for people to have to get their "speech" approved before it is allowed, don't you think Bob?

    And now, rather than having the courage to respond substantively to any of my points, you call me a "cockroach" and require special rules for me, hoping some of your "followers" will call, threaten and harass me. Besides threats and insults do you ever just like to talk about the issues Bob?

    You might consider why are you so afraid of having your beliefs challenged. Could it be because you're afraid they won't hold up to scrutiny? I think so. And if that's what you are afraid of, I assure you, you have reason to be, because they won't.

    Darrel Henschell
    3663 N. Old Wire Rd.
    Fayetteville, AR 72703
    ph: 479-273-7076