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Fraternities Abandoned by Adminstration

I have been frustrated for a number of years, and I feel it is time to speak out.

Increasingly, MIT has displayed the attitude that ILG members -- and particularly, fraternity members -- do not deserve the same assistance and treatment from MIT that dormitory residents receive. In the recent past, when MIT student organizations were involved in complex legal problems with other entities, MIT faculty and advisors were more than willing to help whenever possible -- regardless of the affiliation of the students involved. It appears to me that MIT no longer feels that ILGs -- and again, particularly fraternities -- are worth assisting or protecting.

It is well known that the City of Boston and Boston University would prefer that MIT fraternities not be housed anywhere within the city limits of Boston. Boston University has brought increasing pressure against the houses on Bay State Road -- mostly for economic reasons -- and the City of Boston has done the same with the houses on Beacon Street.

Given this backdrop, it is even more shocking that MIT refuses to help. Essentially, we have small groups of undergraduate MIT students fighting a complicated legal battle with entities that have unlimited power.

MIT has lawyers, MIT has public relations consultants, MIT has effective representation in the community and in local government.

I therefore pledge, as long as MIT will not help MIT ILGs, I will not help MIT. I will not donate a single penny to MIT until it becomes clear that MIT recognizes the value of the ILG system and MIT recognizes that baseless attacks on MIT organizations are attacks on MIT itself.

I encourage other alumni to make the same pledge, and to let this stance be known to the administration and to those who regularly solicit for MIT donations.

If MIT will not react to the humanity of the situation, perhaps they will react to the loss of funds.

Robert M. Ramstad ’91