JULY 21, 1947
CAMPOBELLO ISLAND, N. B., Sunday—It is encouraging to find that such constructive activities as the International Congress of Pediatrics, which met in New York City last week, can function again. When you realize that we are living in an age when one great war is hardly over before we begin to discuss how we can most quickly destroy our civilization by the use of the atomic bomb, it is good to know that child specialists are meeting and considering it worthwhile to try to preserve and improve the health of the children of the world.
Eighteen hundred leading child specialists, coming from 50 countries, met at this congress. One thousand delegates attended from Canada and the United States; 300 from Latin America, 350 from Europe and 150 from other continents. One of the most interesting features of the congress was the account of studies made on malnutrition among German, Dutch, Norwegian and Danish children during the war. Knowledge gained by overseas doctors in the war-torn countries was exchanged with the different knowledge gained by doctors here who have been able to continue on various peacetime research projects which could not go forward elsewhere.
This meeting should give heart to many sorely-tried doctors in countries where it must be heartbreaking to care for children during these years when things they need are so hard to obtain and where the children have been through such trying times. One hopes that the results will be widely publicized, so that people in this country will have a clearer understanding of what is needed to preserve the next generation in the war-torn countries. It should help us also to raise the money more easily for the Children's Emergency Fund. That is something which many of us feel should help the "one world" situation that frequently seems so discouraging. There can at least be one world where the care of children is concerned.
Several people have sent me Justice Robert H. Jackson's recent address in full, feeling that I was not fair in taking him to task for apparently believing that "one world" was an impossible ideal. I must say that in the last few weeks our Soviet brothers are making "one world" constantly more difficult by their suspicions of the rest of the world. No matter how much they may blame us for the fact that they have these suspicions, I still feel it is unfortunate that they have taken some of the actions they have taken during the last few weeks. I do not want to criticize Justice Jackson unfairly, and I quite understand that he was expressing his honest opinion. That, I never doubted.
No matter how much we are tried, however, we cannot give up our hope that we will have "one world." If we cannot preserve that ideal, we might just as well give up the hope of preserving future civilization.