Education: The Mellowing of a President

Notre Dame's President Theodore M. Hesburgh has come a long way since 1969, when he blasted campus disruptions in a famous letter to his students at the nation's best-known Roman Catholic university. Anyone substituting "force for rational persuasion," wrote Father Hesburgh, would be entitled to 15 minutes of "meditation," followed by suspension. Most Americans cheered those words, but their tone caused Hesburgh much trouble. Hard-liners miscast him as their hero; many of the young reviled him. Yet now his image is quite different: he has emerged as a kind of Catholic Kingman Brewster who is so popular among his students that...

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