DECEMBER 7, 1944
WASHINGTON, Wednesday—I was not able to be present yesterday afternoon at the first roundtable discussion of the War Recreation Workers' Association Institute, but I heard much of the second panel discussion under the leadership of Dr. Howard Y. McCluskey of the University of Michigan. The subject was "Community Recreation Looks Toward the Postwar Period." The general consensus of opinion seemed to be that there must continue to be coordination if we were to have proper recreational activities, and in many ways these activities must be widened in the postwar period.
The final address, given by Mark A. McCloskey, director of Community War Services, was on the subject of "The Challenge for Recreational Workers." He pointed out that this might be one of the most exciting professions in the world, having great influence on the young as well as the older people in all the communities of our country. But, he added, if the workers themselves looked upon it merely as a chance for a job, and considered it only from the point of view of salaries and hours and a way to earn a living, there would be very little chance that they would have the right influence in the communities in which they served.
Dr. McCluskey expressed concern because he felt that not enough planning was being done for the young people in junior high school, who, with the end of the war, might become another "lost generation." I am not quite as pessimistic as he, because that could only happen if at the same time we allowed a financial slump to occur like the one we had in the early 30's; and I think our experience of that time will prevent any bad economic situation from gaining dangerous proportions and affecting our younger generation.
Dr. Rosalie Slaughter Morton, the distinguished surgeon, and a friend, Mrs. McKinley, came to tea, and we discussed questions relating to the postwar period in Europe. I am always very glad to find that the representatives of great women's organizations are interested in talking over the conditions of the other countries of the world as they are going to face us at the end of the war. Of course, Dr. Morton has had such unusual opportunities for visiting a great many countries in an official capacity, that her interest will be of value to many groups.
In the evening a group of our MP's, augmented by some men from the Walter Reed and Naval Hospitals, came in for a movie. Afterward, they saw the White House and had refreshments. In the words of Mr. Pepys, after they had gone the household said "And so to bed." I continued to work on my mail, however, for some time.