Brown ridicules President Faust over Harvard’s ROTC policy
Yesterday, Republican Senator Scott Brown of Massachusetts opened a political firestorm by strongly criticizing Harvard University’s policy banning ROTC from the campus. This criticism was the result of a letter written by Harvard’s president, Drew Faust, to Brown and Democratic Senator John Kerry requesting support for The Dream Act.
The Dream Act, which could create a pathway to citizenship for those students who hope to pursue higher education or to join the armed forces, while well intentioned, has raised contention among Republicans who dub it simply a guise for amnesty.
Brown draws the line here, saying Harvard has its priorities “all upside down”. He contends that it is absurd that Harvard could support the admission of illegal immigrants through its doors, while banning the nation’s most prominent college military organization from campus.
However, Harvard’s policy stems from an adjacent policy that bans any campus organization that excludes certain groups of people from its membership. Harvard argues that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell excludes gays from ROTC, and thus Harvard cannot condone its presence on campus.
Although this seems a legitimate reason to deny ROTC’s presence in its halls, many believe the policy originates more from decades old anti-military sentiment than any policy. They fear that even with the repealing of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, Harvard will still block ROTC from formally establishing a chapter at the college. Faust recently stated that the University will not, but are their fears still founded? Perhaps. One needs look no further than the banning of military recruiters that was in place under the Kagan years at the Law School.
Is Brown right, or Faust? That is for you to decide.