My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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SARASOTA, Fla., Friday —It is quite true that in campaign years both Republicans and Democrats become somewhat irresponsible in the things they say about each other. But in all the long years that I have been watching pronouncements from the two parties, I don't think I have ever seen anything quite like the charges that are now being handed out against the Democrats by such Senators as Jenner and McCarthy.

Of course, you might say that these Senators are more accustomed to the use of the words, treason and traitors, than most of us have ever been before. The preservation of our civil rights in this country has been a long and continuous struggle. Yet, never before do I remember when Americans were so divided against Americans that they accused a whole political party as traitorous. And as if that were not enough, they finally deliberately claimed that American soldiers were sent out to be defeated in the Korean war which they had undertaken to fight with their United Nations allies.

These gentlemen cannot mean that General MacArthur meant to lose the war. They probably mean that General MacArthur was not given a free enough rein, but some military experts might come back with the remark that if the war had never gone beyond the 38th parallel, which was our announced goal at the start, many of our military difficulties might have been averted.

One is glad to see a few of the Republicans accept the President's commonsense advice. Realizing that these are difficult times, he suggested that his colleagues should temper their remarks and some of them took his good advice, notably Senator Homer Ferguson, Majority Leader Senator Knowland, and Governor McKeldin of Maryland.

Nobody, I hope, in the Democratic Party is agonizing over these remarks because they are in the long run only political sound and fury, but there is no question that they do not tend to make good feeling. It would seem that there is enough dissension among all our people today without responsible lawmakers creating more rage and resentment. Everybody should read Elmer Davis' book, "But We Were Born Free." Elmer Davis is a quiet, witty, amusing man but in this book he is angry, angry at what he feels are the attacks on our freedom.



Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • Sarasota (Fla., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, February 20, 1954

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.