OCTOBER 21, 1953
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—The League of Women Voters in pursuance of its policy of cooperation in spreading news about the United Nations, asked me to address a meeting in Kent, Connecticut, the other night. It was a very pleasant speaking assignment because the drive up from New York was beautiful. Unfortunately, I started a little late and therefore my hosts, Mr. and Mrs. Worthington, were hurried with their evening meal, but we reached the meeting on time and it speaks well for the interest in the United Nations that here in a Republican stronghold so many will come to hear from a Democrat about the United Nations.
One reporter from a Waterbury paper which had run some adverse editorials on my report of the effect which our investigating methods have had abroad asked me several questions on behalf of his paper during the question period and another young man asked me if my attitude meant that I approved of retaining Communists in government. That was an amusing question and brought laughter from the audience and when I promptly responded, "No, but I thought it was possible to get rid of them without using some of our present methods," there was applause.
It still surprises me that we have become so fearful now, when during two wars we were willing to trust the FBI to protect us without particular assistance from Congressional investigating committees. Now the time is over when Communist activities might have done the greatest harm, but we are suspicious of everyone who is even called before a Congressional committee for questioning. Nobody waits to know what the ultimate result of the inquiries may be. If the poor individual has a job, he is out of it then and there.
Last Saturday I went to Newburgh in the evening, taking an English friend, Mrs. Francis Hirst, with me to attend the 71st annual chamber of commerce dinner. It was a very successful celebration and apparently the whole atmosphere interested her very much and she enjoyed talking to the gentlemen, who seemed also to enjoy talking to her.
On Sunday I went to New York right after lunch in order to attend a church service at five o'clock where the U.N. Day Prayer, which has been put to music, was given for the first time in honor of Mr. John Golden, chairman of New York City's U.N. Day.
I am glad to see that Vice President Nixon also succumbed, as I did many years ago, to the traditional Maory greeting. They touch foreheads instead of hands but it looks as though you were rubbing noses. The idea back of it, of course, is that two intellects draw people closer together and I think it is rather a delightful custom, but to the uninitiated, it does look a little strange.
I hope the Vice President is enjoying his trip to New Zealand and Australia. I visited them in war time and I like the people of both countries very much. I am sure that Mr. Nixon will find a warmth of hospitality which will make him feel really at home.