MAY 24, 1939
NEW YORK, Tuesday—So many young people have been coming to the White House to sing and to play, that in going back through my columns, I find that I forgot to mention a delightful group from Atlanta, Ga., who came here with their director, Mrs. Mary Griffith Dobbs. They are very young ladies and they are called the Dobbs Miniature Harp Ensemble. They play charmingly and have a great deal of poise for their age.
All the groups of young people staying with me, who visited the Federal Bureau of Investigation the other day, were fingerprinted and later on this brought up an interesting discussion. I believe that for our own protection, it would be well if all of us were fingerprinted. We do it now to babies when they arrive in this world by taking an imprint of the tiny feet. However, it seems to me altogether wrong that we should demand the registration and fingerprinting of aliens in this country, when we do not insist on living up to the same regulations ourselves.
So much that is good has come to us through our foreign immigration, and yet so often we hear people who seem to be entirely ignorant of the contribution which other lands have made to civilization in the United States. We would undoubtedly lose much if we ever cut off entirely this flow of new blood into our country.
I think there is much to be said, however, in favor of deporting alien criminals who are not citizens. Secondly, I would like to see all people who live here and earn their living here, make up their minds after a given period of time either to go home, or to become American citizens. The exact period when they should be asked to make this final decision is, of course, debatable, but it should be at some point and not too long after they have had an opportunity of knowing this country. This seems to me entirely fair and desirable for the good of the nation.
Mrs. Morgenthau and I left Washington yesterday afternoon to come to New York City for Rural Women's Day at the New York Fair.
We went without dinner in order to see Katharine Cornell in "No Time for Comedy." This is the first time I have seen her in comedy and she is charming as always. The whole cast is excellent and Laurence Olivier seemed to me very good.
We came home after the play and had a bite of supper all by ourselves. Today we start out early for the Fair.