JUNE 7, 1949
NEW YORK, Monday—It seems to me quite essential that we consider the importance of the position of the Mayor of the City of New York. It is true that it apparently carries only local importance. But, as a matter of fact, being the entrance port for so many foreigners and the seat of the United Nations, it really has a tremendous impact on international affairs. Therefore, it must be considered from the point of view of both its local and international importance. It is perfectly evident that the man occupying this position has a very great opportunity to serve his country as well as his city.
Mayor William O'Dwyer wants to retire, and I can perfectly understand that desire. The little frictions, the constant watching to see that those around him live up to the things that he thinks are for the best interests of the great city—all these responsibilities make the mayor's position nerve-racking. If, however, it is possible for those who are trying to draft him to make his work less harassing and give him a greater sense of freedom, I hope they will do so. Good mayors are not easy to find for our great cities.
Mayor O'Dwyer has been a good mayor. And, as the impact of international importance is likely to grow in the City of New York, I, for one, would be happy if he would reconsider and remain in office.
I do not vote in New York City but, as a citizen of the state, I have a pride in the way the city is run and in the impression made on foreigners who come in increasing numbers into the city's port and airfields. Therefore, I add my voice to the many that must be making the mayor's decision to retire more difficult than he imagined it would be!
Stay with us, Mr. Mayor.
* * *
The past weekend was a very pleasant one. It was warmer than any so far, and for the first time most people have felt like swimming. Also, picnics have been very pleasant.
We enjoyed having Dorsey G. Fisher, cultural attache at our Embassy in Mexico, with us over the weekend. He looked after us in London in 1942 and this seemed a great contrast to those busy days.
Also, David Cohn has been staying with my son and daughter-in-law, and we have had many stimulating arguments on American education.
I finally asked Mr. Cohn on Sunday what he thought was the most valuable thing that education could give one and to my great joy he answered: "Curiosity and interest in the world around us."
He is planning shortly to start off again on his travels and I must say that, with his keen mind, travelling at the present time must be very rewarding. I have always felt that most of us are going through life without observing very much. That is not so, I feel sure, with this gentleman.