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Judgment

THE MAIL

To the Editors of The Crimson:

The recent trend of labeling scientific judgments as "irresponsible" on the basis of their social implications illustrates the tendency to suppress unpleasant possibilities. Since when have we advocated censorship? If people are made wary of political attacks we are in danger of compromising our intellectual integrity. And to erode intellectual integrity is to obliterate free discussion. How then will we ever arrive at any truths, and how can we protect ourselves from oppression?

This all seems very obvious. But even so, when last fall Prof. E.O. Wilson was slandered by hypersensitive antiracists, he was attacked not so much for saying something wrong as for saying something he "shouldn't" have said. There was all too little refutation of the actual presentation involved. This is a frightening anti-intellectual development.

Now The Crimson is putting similar social pressure on Prof. Bernard Davis. They are distorting Davis's statements until anyone would find them objectionable and then calling him a racist. Davis's letter to The Crimson (May 19) seems highly articulate and rational; why dispute him on an emotional level? Again, in a thinking society can we condone the repression of ideas?

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In summary, one could wish for a more objective examination of the issues. Their intrinsic validity should be under question, and not their societal acceptability. I can only admire the conscientiousness of those who stand by their unpopular opinions. Robin Kanwisher '79

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