MAY 17, 1958
LAS VEGAS—A dealer in hearing aids in Cedar Falls, Iowa, says that, because I recommend a certain hearing aid, many people whom he could fit with something that suits them better refuse to accept it. So I want to explain to one and all that, for me, this hearing aid has filled my needs in a remarkable way.
I use it primarily at the theatre, in public meetings and in board meetings and in conversations with small groups of people. It makes all the difference in the ease with which I hear because it magnifies sound.
But no one should take a hearing aid without consulting with his doctor or discussing carefully the conditions for which he needs help. One thing may well suit one person and another thing another person.
I certainly would not want people to take my advice blindly merely because I have found the greatest help with a certain make of hearing aid that is so conveniently placed in my eyeglasses.
I am grateful to the gentleman from Iowa for drawing this situation to my attention. It had never occurred to me that people would do more than try something that I had found good, naturally bearing in mind that their needs might be different and would be concerned only with what best suits their needs.
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I appeared at a hearing this week on the proposed changes in New York's Washington Square, which I hope very much will remain just as it is.
It does not seem to me important that Fifth Avenue be extended below where it now begins. What does seem important is preserving the peace and quiet of the square, for we have few places of that kind in the city.
A city as big as ours develops neighborhoods, each with its own personality, and these neighborhoods contribute to the character of the whole city. Greenwich Village and Washington Square are a real neighborhood and we should do nothing to change their character.
I am even sorry it was not possible to preserve some of the old and historically interesting houses on the north side of the square, but the development on the south side of the square seems to have added to the area's peace and calm. The fact that it is a quiet spot for the students of New York University, for the children and old people who sit on the benches, gives it particular character.
Our passion for destroying and rebuilding everywhere should be curtailed somewhat so that we do preserve a few spots that remain more or less the same and can be revisited and evoke past history.
I have always liked to walk down some of the streets surrounding the square and remember that an old lady, a cousin of mine named Mrs. Weekes, told me stories of when she came to that neighborhood. Her husband did not think it proper for her to go out alone and carry her market basket, so he carried the basket and she clung to his arm while they purchased the household needs for the day. This same old lady had danced with Lafayette!