DECEMBER 29, 1952
HYDE PARK, Sunday—The McCarran-Walter Immigration Act, just put into effect, seems to be bringing about many difficulties. Perhaps these difficulties will in turn bring about a reconsideration of certain phases of this act in the coming session of Congress.
I imagine it is almost impossible to write a bill and think of all the difficulties that may develop after it goes into operation. Certainly those of us who have worked on the Human Rights Commission should know how difficult this is, for none of us foresaw the many pitfalls awaiting the covenants of human rights. I am quite sure that if these are finally completed and ratified by the requisite number of states, there will be many changes in them as the years go on. Even our constitution has been changed with the changing conditions of the years. It therefore will not be surprising if the McCarran Act, which has so greatly changed our attitude toward people coming to our country even on a temporary basis, will require some modifications.
Senator Lehman might now be consulted in this connection by Senator McCarran. Some of the work he did on the substitute bill, which was not accepted, might be valuable in considering the changes that will have to be made because of difficulties in our port of entry.
Two days after Christmas and our family began to separate. Friday night Elliott and his wife and I drove over to my son, Franklin, Junior's home for dinner. It was like another Christmas party and their tree—brightly lighted in front of their dining room window, where the curtains were left open—beckoned to all to come and join in the Christmas celebration. Their nine-month-old baby, Nancy, is still too young to have much understanding of the Christmas spirit, but she seemed very happy with a soft bunny rabbit which played Christmas carols as she held it tight in her arms.
Saturday Elliott and his family started back to Colorado. After spending New Year's on their ranch they will go to Los Angeles for several months, so three of my children will be seeing each other there. Franklin, Jr., and his family will move to Washington after the New Year, but John and I will stay here till January 4 and then be in and out of New York City. His children will be sad when school begins again, I think, for they seem to enjoy the country even without snow.
This afternoon I will have to go to New York for a couple of days, but I will be back on New Year's Eve. There is a dinner for Senator Lehman which I want to attend Sunday evening. Monday I am busy in New York, and Tuesday I go to Philadelphia before returning here on Wednesday.