To the Editor:
Mr. Rorty in his article “Greek Letter Discrimination” (February 1956) describes an incident which took place at the University of New Hampshire in 1946 involving a Jewish student who pledged and moved into a national fraternity.
Mr. Rorty writes: “Then the college dean advised the fraternity members that because the man was Jewish they should clear his eligibility with the national organization.” Inasmuch as I was the dean involved, I should like to set the record straight by saying that my advice to the fraternity members was to take a stand with the national office on keeping the man. The local fraternity made representation to the national office but was told it could not keep the Jewish student.
Ten years have passed and we have made much progress on our campus to eliminate fraternity discriminatory practices. . . . (1) the national fraternity concerned has eliminated discriminatory membership practices and now has Jewish members; (2) twice during the past ten years Jewish students have ably served the Interfraternity Council as president; (3) five years ago the Interfraternity Council made a promise to our Student Senate to actively work toward elimination of fraternity discriminatory practices at national conventions; (4) in 1955 the Interfraternity Council publicly announced a vote of 12 to 2 reaffirming its stand against discrimination; and (5) our one Jewish fraternity (non-discriminating) may have to disband because other national fraternities have been attracting Jewish members in increasing numbers.
I am pleased to report the above because the University of New Hampshire discourages discriminatory practices and has taken every opportunity to effect changes in an educational and orderly way. While the fight for equality of opportunity has not been won, we shall continue to work toward its ultimate achievement.
William A. Medesy
Associate Dean of Students
University of New Hampshire
Durham, New Hampshire