My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Friday—I am always being asked to show proof that in the United States money is being spent to harm the United Nations. Well, I have such proof right in front of me in the form of a pamphlet which was sent to me from Barnes City, Iowa. The lady who sent it tells me that she got it with a Sunday School paper. Here are a few excerpts from this extraordinary pamphlet:

"Giving Away Our Liberties to the Super Government of the U.N.

"Apart from these dangerous aspects of our membership in the anti-Christian U.N. these are serious reasons why we must unite in prayer to try to get the U.S. out of the U.N. Some of the most-important reasons are the deadly 'genocide treaty,' the 'Covenant of Human Rights,' the 'UNESCO,' together with other demands of the U.N. that we abandon our immigration laws, our tariffs and our foreign policies."

Just let us analyze:

The genocide treaty is not deadly. It was written to unite all people of all nations against the mass extermination of a whole people in the way Hitler tried to exterminate the Jews in Germany and later the Poles in Poland. This treaty lacks a "states rights clause," however, which we like in every treaty. Thus, we only bind ourselves in such areas as are covered by Federal responsibility. Anything else has to be ratified by each state individually. This clause seemed unnecessary in a treaty with such a simple objective, but it is evident we will not ratify any treaty without it.

There are two covenants on human rights, and since we had served notice that we would not present them to Congress for ratification we had little influence on their final form. I do not think they could be ratified in their present form so they need not give us any anxiety.

UNESCO is a specialized agency that offers certain kinds of aid to help nations develop world understanding and knowledge about the U.N., but it makes no demands on the U.S. Nor, for that matter, does the U.N. as a whole, except with the agreement of our own government under our charter obligations. There is no way in which the U.N. can make us change our immigration laws, tariffs, or foreign policies.

This pamphlet, then, is playing on the ignorance of the people. However, it is being published by a California organization called the "Cinema Education Guild," and Christian people are exhorted to write to their Washington representatives and to the President and Vice President about it.

Such bunk, of course, can have no influence except where there is ignorance. But experience has taught us that it takes a long time for people to learn about anything new. The U.N. is only eight years old; hence, these pamphlets can do harm, and we should fight them whenever we come across them.



Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

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

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, May 22, 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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Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
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MEP edition publlished on 2008-06-30

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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.