AUGUST 24, 1938
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—The book I received the other day, and which I told you gave me a thrill, is now out! It is called "My Days" and covers two years and half of my daily writings, very carefully edited. It tries to furnish the reader with an interesting diary that is not repetitious.
This daily stint has been fun to do, but not the least interesting part of it has been its gradually increasing correspondence. People are so ready to help you if you speak of a difficulty or tell your ignorance on any subject. At times, they are not less ready to criticize, but it is all of it education in human reactions and that is the most interesting study in the world.
The World Youth Congress comes to an end today and I shall be sorry not to receive daily reports from it. Having one of the young English delegates staying in the house has kept me very well informed and I shall read the final report with great interest.
Last night, I re-read, because of much discussion on the vital needs of the South, the last chapter in Jonathan Daniels' book: "A Southerner Discovers The South." These are paragraphs which stand out for me. Remember I am quoting a Southerner!
"Many aristocrats in the South, and that is the name for both the Coca-Cola bottlers and the members of the Society of the Cincinnati, do not believe and never have believed that the people should—if they could—govern the South. Such a faith or faithlessness leads to the unincorporated mill village and the company union. Included under it are both the kindliest paternalism and the most vicious and careless exploitation."
"The Southern Negro is not an incurably ignorant ape. The Southern white masses are not biologically degenerate. Both are peoples who may hang heavy on the national advance or help to speed and sustain it. Both are peoples who could consume and produce more wealth."
"Increasingly the ancient and venerable do without plan is deserted. But what of a new plan for the South?"
This is a question of national interest. The South must have a fair deal and stand on an equal footing with the rest of the country industrially. Southern people must have the same opportunities for education and health. We must learn to think nationally, for there is no longer room for sectionalism if we are to progress.