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

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NEW YORK—One had hoped that the bus integration orders would not cause any disturbance in states where they were issued but apparently even such a simple thing as using public conveyances on a nonsegregated basis is giving an opportunity for hotheads and unthinking people to demonstrate their lack of respect for the law.

Fortunately, we know that throughout the South there are hundreds and hundreds of law-abiding and sensible people who are trying very hard to live through this period of inevitable change with as much grace and calmness as possible. One hopes that their self-control will last long enough to permit a final acceptance of the law.

There must be a realization that all our citizens, regardless of race or color or creed, have a right to the use of public conveyances and to access to public places without discrimination under the same rules that govern the behavior of all citizens.

I find the appeal to the West by the present Hungarian government one of the most astonishing that has come from any Soviet-controlled government. The newspaper representing the regime has asked that the West give the present Hungarian government financial assistance and share its technical knowledge.

The lack of technicians is certainly developing in Hungary as a result of the flight of many of their best technical people. Because they had worked closely with Western scientists and kept in touch with Western scientific publications, these men knew what was going on in the world outside and could not be fooled by Soviet propaganda spread in every Soviet-controlled country against the West.

It is extraordinary to find an organ of the present government acknowledging that living standards for people in similar positions outside of Hungary, even in Austria, are higher than they can be in Soviet-controlled Hungary. If this fact is generally accepted and known it will fan the flames of discontent in every Soviet satellite.

I spoke the other day with someone who had recently returned from Egypt. He spoke hopefully of the possibility of a peaceful settlement in that area. And he seemed to feel that our government was thinking in terms of offering a general development scheme for the whole Near East that might prove tempting to the people themselves and remove many of the difficulties now facing the leaders.

Many of the leaders really are convinced that the fight to wipe out Israel must come to an end. They also know, however, that no Arab government proposing cessation of hostilities could stand against the wrath of its own people. The Arab countries have inflamed the people against Israel to such an extent that they cannot now control the fire that they have started.

Perhaps from outside they can be saved from their own mistakes, and the people of this Near Eastern area may profit if we can devise a plan to raise their standards of living.

E. R.

(Copyright, 1957, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, January 2, 1957

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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Available under licence from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

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MEP edition publlished on June 30, 2008.

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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.