My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

Text Size: Small Text Normal Text Large Text Larger Text

HYDE PARK, Sunday—During my brief visit to Washington last week, I was impressed by a striking fact—namely, that as you walk into Washington drawing-rooms you are always forcibly reminded of the divisions in the world today. For someone is sure to say: "What a pity So and So isn't here. Oh, I suppose it would have been difficult to invite them just now. The position isn't quite clear as to their country's stand on so and so."

Except in the case of the USSR representatives, who never forget their nationalism, I have grown so accustomed to thinking of people as people, and not of their countries or the stand their countries have taken on this or that issue, that this attitude always comes to me as a bit of a shock. Washington feels these situations much more acutely than we do in other parts of the country!

I spent a few minutes with the President, who seemed remarkably well and confident. Though he feels the weight of responsibility that he carries, not only for our country but for the world as a whole, I think he also feels he has the backing of the people of the United States, which is the one great help that can be given the President.

I began my visit with a stop in Baltimore to speak at a crowded luncheon for the Baltimore County League of Women Voters. Both Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons I had the pleasure of seeing some old friends, whom my hostess, Mrs. Adolph C. Miller, had very kindly asked to tea.

In Washington I spoke at the Women's National Press Club luncheon and enjoyed seeing many familiar faces. I spoke four times at the State Department, to different groups, on the last U.N. General Assembly and the Declaration of Human Rights, and found a great deal of interest.

On the 13th, since the March of Dimes campaign was being opened in Washington, I met cunning little Linda Brown of San Antonio, Texas, who is this year's March of Dimes poster girl, at the U Street Theatre. She was joined there by an adorable little youngster who still had a brace on one leg, and both of them were photographed held in the arms of the grown-ups. The little Texas lady, wearing cowboy boots, promptly kicked them off to the joy of the surrounding company.

Together we went to the Capitol Theatre, where I have so often opened the March of Dimes campaign in the past. Everyone provided Linda with ten-cent pieces to put into the bottles lined up and marked with the names of the various states. I hope the March of Dimes campaign for 1949 will be very successful, for last summer's epidemic took most of the reserves which the chapters had been able to build up in the several states, and this year the people's generosity is much needed.

I am sure everybody is pleased that the Senate Foreign Relations Committee unanimously approved President Truman's nomination of Dean Acheson to be the next Secretary of State. The vote of the Senate is scheduled for early this week, but I am sure there is such a general feeling of admiration for the very courageous and forthright answers given by Mr. Acheson that the total vote in his favor will be very large.

E. R.
TMs, AERP, FDRL