The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

[This column has emendations. View original version]


HYDE PARK, Tuesday—The other day the minister of the Mount Hollywood Congregational Church in Los Angeles sent me the story of a service conducted there by Dr. Toyohiko Kagawa, a Japanese who was a Christian before the war and who is presently in the United States in the hope of spreading the doctrine of brotherhood.

Dr. Kagawa is dedicated to finding the real formula for peace by solving the problems of hunger that exist among large areas of the world's people. He feels that money spent "to develop the science of nutrition, to develop desert and ocean as sources of food, to plant nut trees on mountain sides will go further to insure peace than would the same money spent for armaments."

In the churches of this country and in many liberal groups he would find no difficulty in getting agreement to his thesis. There are many of us who grieve that the necessity has come upon us to prepare for a greater state of military defense in the hope of preserving peace. We would much prefer to see our people's taxes go toward the improvement of conditions within our own country and all over the world. But there is one nation that acts as a center of agitation; it speaks with the voice of peace, but acts in preparation for war.

One of our Senators in Washington made the suggestion that we devote a portion of the money devoted to armaments toward increasing the well-being of people throughout the world and that it be done equally by all nations of the world. But in much the same way as atomic energy requires a United Nations inspection team, so this would require the same sort of watchfulness, since no nation can afford to do this unless all nations do it.

Dr. Kagawa will have many attentive listeners and they will appreciate his effort to build goodwill among all the nations of the world. But, personally, I wish that he could spend much of his time in the Soviet Union and the satellite countries. They need his philosophy and the spreading of a Christian doctrine more than we do, deep as is the need of all human beings to strive for brotherhood.

No one can say that he completely understands Christ's teachings or that he completely lives up to them in imitation of His own life. The fear of aggression, however, is holding back much of the economic improvement that could be brought about in the world, first because it is necessitating the putting of more money into armaments and next because it is making people constantly more suspicious of one another.

We cannot repeat too often that the United States and its people do not want war. We have never been a nation that wanted to interfere with neighboring nations and we have had an undefended border between us and Canada for more than 100 years. These are facts that speak of the desire for peace within this nation.

E. R.


Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Hyde Park (Dutchess County, N.Y., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, August 9, 1950

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
[ ERPP bio | LC | VIAF | WorldCat | DPLA | Wikidata | SNAC ]

Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

  • Brick, Christopher (Editor)
    [ VIAF | ORCID ]
  • Regenhardt, Christy (Associate Editor)
    [ ISNI ]
  • Black, Allida M. (Editor)
    [ VIAF | ISNI ]
  • Binker, Mary Jo (Associate Editor)
    [ VIAF | ORCID ]
  • Alhambra, Christopher C. (Electronic Text Editor)
    [ VIAF | ORCID ]

Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project

Available under licence from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

Published with permission from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

MEP edition publlished on June 30, 2008.

TEI-P5 edition published on April 28, 2017.

XML master last modified on June 9, 2017.

HTML version generated and published on May 3, 2022.

Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.