MAY 23, 1952
NEW YORK, Thursday—Last summer I visited the George "Junior Republic," a self-governing, coeducational youth community where young people learn and work together. It is situated not very far from Cornell University, in the Finger Lake district of New York State.
This unique enterprise was founded years ago by Mr. George, and it has kept his ideals of serving youth right through the years. Its young people come from many backgrounds and I thought it was a very interesting institution.
Like all other organized groups, it has to raise money, and this year the Foreign Commerce Club of New York is again sponsoring its annual moonlight cruise. This trip is planned for the night of June 27 and will be a four hour cruise on the Hudson River. Entertainment will be provided by celebrities from stage, screen and radio. Tables may be reserved for any number, whether it be an office party or just a party for friends. Either way, everyone attending will have the satisfaction of knowing that he is helping a very worthy undertaking in the George "Junior Republic."
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Tuesday afternoon I got home from the Human Rights Commission rather late and as I went through the lobby of the hotel three ladies stopped me and said, "We have just arrived to take you to your speaking engagement."
I apologized for my lateness and dashed upstairs to leave my briefcase. Miss Thompson had a glass of milk and a sandwich ready for me, and so in 10 minutes I was back and went with the ladies to a packed meeting of the members of the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union.
They asked me to tell them how the world looks to me today after my trip and what I thought the members of organized labor could do.
As far as I can see, as regards our own government and the situation in the world, a member of organized labor is just like any other citizen of the United States. What he can do is no more and no less than what the rest of us can do.
It seems to me that all of us have a primary obligation to see that we build here at home, in every individual, in every family, and in every community the best example of democracy and what democracy means as a way of life.
Since the eyes of the world are turned upon us constantly, what each one of us does is more important than all the words that are broadcast by our statesmen in Washington. It is living democracy that is important and, therefore, each of us carries a heavy responsibility.
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On Tuesday evening Mr. Isador Lubin, his wife and his mother-in-law took me to the William Hodson Community Center in the Bronx.
This is a meeting place for the older people of the community. It was started a number of years ago for just a few persons but today more than a thousand are registered as members.
New centers for the oldsters are springing up in different parts of the city, and they are doing a great good for those past the prime of their lives. There are planned programs of activities for men and women both, and many opportunities are offered for the older folks to meet and talk with their contemporaries. It is known for a fact that this has made life so much happier for them that it makes a difference in the happiness of their families, too.
The audience Tuesday night was a very alive and alert one, and there was a sprinkling of younger people present, which there should always be whenever the oldsters gather.