JANUARY 15, 1959
CHICAGO—I must break into the coverage of my present trip for the American Association for the United Nations to tell you about what I think is an interesting and important series of panel discussions that are currently being held in New York. These meetings are part of the centennial season (1958-59) celebration of the Brooklyn Academy of Music, which is a division of the Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences.
Mr. William Mckelvy Martin, the director of the Academy, has a strong conviction that human rights merit constant emphasis. So, back at the beginning of the season he arranged that one lecture be given, to be followed by a series of four panel discussions on this important issue.
He invited as his speaker Federal Judge J. Waties Waring, who handed up the public schools desegregation order in Clarendon, S.C., which led to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision barring segregation and ordering gradual integration in our public schools.
Judge Waring delivered that lecture last month, which was followed by the first of the panel discussions, the theme of which was "Discrimination in Sports." The guests on the panel were Jackie Robinson, Sugar Ray Robinson and Nat Ash, with Judge Waring acting as chairman and moderator, which will be his role at the three forthcoming meetings.
The second in the series will be held this Thursday, January 15, and the theme is "Discrimination in Education." Judge Waring's guests will include Dr. Kenneth Clark, noted psychologist and educator; Dr. Benjamin Fine, formerly education editor of The New York Times; and Dr. Gardner C. Taylor, the head of the Concord Baptist Church and the only Negro member of the New York City Board of Education and also the head of the Protestant Council of New York.
On February 5 "Discrimination in the Entertainment Field" will be the subject, with the guests still to be chosen.
Then on March 12 Judge Waring will bring to his panel discussion U.S. Senator Jacob Javits and Norman Thomas, and they will discuss the position of the Negro and other minorities in the national and international fields.
These discussions should be a great help in stimulating the people of our great City of New York to accept their responsibilities on one of the questions that concerns vast areas of the world today. Our country's position in the world today is very much affected by our attitude toward minorities at home. In the great struggle between the Communist and the non-Communist nations in their appeal to the noncommitted areas of the world, the question of the equality granted by us to the minorities in our midst has an overwhelming influence.
Therefore, this is not a question of purely local or domestic importance, for it involves the much broader threat of whether the world will one day be a Communist world. We make few decisions in the U.S. on human rights and civil rights that do not have a bearing on this broad international struggle, and we should never forget that every action taken here in the U.S. is known in every part of the world almost as quickly as it is known in this country.
I should also like to call to the attention of my readers the crusade that has been carried on and is still being carried on by CARE. This crusade is designed to use some of our surplus food to help feed those who are hungry in other parts of the world.
When there is a famine in some part of the world we can make a very dramatic appeal throughout our country and the response usually is most commendable. But many of us do not realize that in many parts of the world while there is not actual famine there simply is not enough to eat, nor the right kind of food, so many people die from various causes stemming from the basic cause of malnutrition.
You can help in this crusade by contributing one dollar to the CARE organization during these winter months. That dollar will mean that CARE can send 22 pounds of life-giving food to a needy family in Europe, Asia, Latin America, or the Middle East. And every CARE package means a message of hope and friendship from the American people to the particular family who receives it. One hundred dollars sends a ton of food, and you can even set down your preference as to which country the food you send will go, but you cannot set down a particular individual or family.