JANUARY 25, 1947
NEW YORK, Friday—I was sorry to see a headline in a paper the other day which seemed to indicate that Henry Wallace and I were at odds. I have always believed in Mr. Wallace's integrity and admired his ability, but that does not mean that you have to agree in the way in which you wish to work for your objectives.
I made it quite clear, when I attended the first meeting of the Americans for Democratic Action, that I was not an active member of any new organization. I am afraid I am too old and too busy to take on new activities. But all the members who attended that first meeting were asked to consider themselves a "committee of the whole" and, of course, I shall be glad to be helpful whenever it is possible.
I would like to see all progressive groups work together. But since some of us prefer to have our staffs and policy-making groups completely free of any American Communist infiltration if we can possibly prevent it, while others have not quite as strong a feeling on this subject, it is natural that there should be two set-ups. That does not mean that the force of all liberals may not go to some of the same objectives, and I certainly hope this will be the case.
In our democracy, I feel that Americans who believe in democracy should lead. While other beliefs must exist and I would fight for the rights of others to their own beliefs, I must work with those who hold to the fundamental beliefs which I consider sound and true.
* * *
I went down to Washington yesterday morning to speak at the opening of the 1947 March of Dimes campaign for the Infantile Paralysis Foundation. From the station, we went directly to the White House, where Mrs. Truman met us. It was pleasant to see the many familiar faces. They are always kind and welcoming.
At lunch, there were the young movie star Peggy Ann Garner and her mother, as well as a young substitute who came from New York City with her mother because the foundation workers were a little uncertain as to whether the plane from Hollywood would arrive on time. We were joined by the President, which was a great thrill to the girls and very pleasant for me, as it gave me an opportunity to talk to him.
Then we were taken downstairs to pose for the newsreel and still cameras. Finally, at 3:15, we went on the air.
I had not realized before that the emergency fund which the foundation builds up for use in epidemics is practically exhausted, and so this year they are asking everyone to contribute twice as much as they did last year. I hope this will be done.
* * *
I spent two hours at the State Department with the interdepartmental group interested in human rights, and we discussed the agenda for the meetings of the Human Rights Commission which start on Jan. 27th. I also had an opportunity to see Secretary of State Marshall for a few minutes. I was happy to be able to see him, as my husband always had such respect and admiration for him as Chief of Staff. Later I dined with friends, then took the midnight train back to New York.