WTF, Harvard Crimson?

Update: The ad in question

Update: The ad in question

I’m agog. Via AP:

Recently named for the second straight year as the No. 1 school in U.S. News & World Report rankings of American colleges, Harvard is known for its rigorous scholarly standards and prestigious reputation.

On Tuesday, however, The Harvard Crimson, in what it said was an error, ran the Holocaust-questioning advertisement, which had been rejected by the paper over the summer.

In response to the commotion created by the ad, Crimson President Maxwell L. Child released a statement Wednesday citing three weeks of summer vacation between the submission of the advertisement and the publication of the paper as the explanation for why the ad “fell through the cracks.”

“We want to stress that we do not endorse the views put forth in any advertisement that runs in The Crimson, and this case was no different,” Child said in a letter to Crimson readers. “We will work hard to avoid such lapses in communication in the future, and hope our readers will accept that yesterday’s error was a logistical failure and not a philosophical one.”

The ad, paid for by Holocaust denier Bradley R. Smith and his Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust, primarily raises questions about then-Gen. Dwight Eisenhower’s account of World War II and the existence of Nazi gas chambers…

But the group’s students reacted appropriately, he said, and the incident should be seen as an example of “extraordinary mature student leadership in response to an unfortunate situation.”

The Crimson was very responsive after many people in the Harvard community, including numerous members of Harvard Hillel, contacted the paper expressing their concerns, he said.

Harvard Hillel’s student president, Rebecca Gillette, circulated a letter saying she thought the situation was being appropriately addressed. “The fact that organizations and individuals like that publicized in this advertisement still exist today is frightening and disturbing, but unfortunately it seems that Holocaust denial will persist for years to come,” she said.

Robert Trestan, civil rights counsel for the Anti-Defamation League of New England, said Smith and his organization have placed ads in approximately 15 college papers around the country so far this year. [What the fuck kind of colleges are these? ed.]

I have no doubt that this was, indeed, a mistake, but still…that’s one hell of a mistake. Even more hellish when you realize a Harvard student made it. But an honest mistake.

Certain others have no excuse.

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One Response

  1. ah crap there goes my hope for humanity again

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