JULY 3, 1948
HYDE PARK, Friday—I spent a rather busy day in New York City on Wednesday. I spoke at the luncheon given by the Dress Institute of the National Conference of Christians and Jews.
I was very much impressed by the spirit with which those present seemed to be entering into the educational plans of the organization. The type of literature and the opportunities being offered by the Conference for training in human understanding and tolerance among different racial and religious groups certainly should be one of the very powerful influences for good in our country.
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Later in the day after a short time at the office of the United States Mission to the United Nations where I saw Dr. Dubois, I caught the train for Red Bank, N.J., and spoke in the evening at a small meeting of the United Jewish Appeal.
One of my reasons for going to stay with my old friend, Mrs. Lewis Thompson, at Red Bank, was because of the opportunity to visit her daughter, Mrs. Rowan Boone in Princeton. She is convalescing after a siege of illness, but nothing seems to down her spirit. She is one of the most vivid personalities I know; she is always crusading for the things she believes we need in this world. She wants to see us become a nation that really lives up to the ideals expressed in the constitution, and I surmise she is rather impatient with any of us who lag by the wayside instead of pushing forward steadily.
Dean Gauss of Princeton University came in while I was there. He repeated something which I have heard over and over again, namely, that the returned GI's had raised the standards so high that many colleges and universities are not able today to take the sons of many old graduates. When the boys who have been through the war get the opportunity to go to college, they have a real determination to work. Dean Gauss told me that to get into Princeton nowadays you had to meet a pretty high standard and convince the Committee on Admissions that you are so promising they couldn't afford to turn you down.
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Staying with my good Republican friend, Mrs. Thompson, I was amused to have her say that she felt the people wanted to be sure that their money was wisely spent. I gathered she thought that would be one of Governor Dewey's strong appeals to the public.
This does not surprise me, since it is the one thing I am hearing about Governor Dewey. It is stated: "He is a good administrator; he saved money in New York State; he will clean up the Federal Administration, simplify it and convince everyone that we are getting everything we want and paying less for it than ever before."
That combination is difficult to achieve and I have always been more interested in the program than I was in the assurance that money would be saved with the accompanying implication that you wouldn't miss a program. I shall watch with care, having seen a number of groups advise and blueprint reorganization of the Federal government and then seen some of the oldest and best established departments go right on as though no one had ever made any suggestions for change.
This new-broom-sweeps clean idea is a nice one, but a new broom gets old so soon!