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


NEW YORK, Thursday—It is interesting to note that Clement Attlee, head of the Labor party in England, was unable to find much to quarrel with where Prime Minister Winston Churchill was concerned since Mr. Churchill has just made a proposal in the field of foreign policy major powers.

But Mr. Attlee seems to feel there is difficulty in knowing exactly who states policies in Washington and what those policies are, and he blames our Constitution because he says its system of checks and balances makes it impossible for an Administration to be master of its own situation.

It is true, when our Constitution was written it was written in a world where quite obviously the United States had to be isolationist. But its value has always been that it was so written it could be interpreted as the world situation changed, in a way that would make it possible for us to meet whatever situation arose.

In commenting on the Korean situation, Mr. Attlee said: "There are elements in the United States who do not want to settle. It is just as well to face up to this fact. There are people who want an all-out war with China and against Communism in general and there is a strong influence of the Chiang Kai-shek lobby. Therefore, I have suggested to the Prime Minister that it would be better if there were other advisors from other United Nations concerned."

He goes on to say that this suggestion was not made because of distrust of the United States, but in order to strengthen our Administration which wants to come to an agreement against these elements here, which he feels are largely economic and Congressional.

There is also a feeling, I am told, in many parts of Europe that Senator McCarthy has gained so much influence that no matter what the Administration advocates, he and his group in the Republican party can win out and have things their way.

I paid my second visit this morning to the School for the Deaf, run by the New York City public school system. Today I saw the shops in which boys and girls are taught trades. This is a very important project since it helps them to go into the vocational schools or even directly out into industry, if they do not have the mental qualifications which make it seem worthwhile to go through high school.

The home economics room was most attractive and efficient.

We also sat in on a class where they use the most modern mechanics for hearing and teaching. Every child used a hearing aid and a loudspeaker. Some of them were totally deaf and yet they were learning to speak. One boy had spent weeks learning how to say "jute" in talking of Pakistan's production.

It is hard for anyone who has not watched these classes to realize what patience it takes both on the part of the teacher and of the pupil.

Every visit to this school makes me prouder of the fact that it is part of our public school system.



Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • New York (N.Y., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, May 15, 1953

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

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