NOVEMBER 6, 1953
NEW YORK, Thursday—I have just been notified that a charity which I thought had come to an end a long while ago is asking for help again. It is called "New Eyes for the Needy, Inc.," and operates in Short Hills, N.J. What they ask is that you do not throw away old spectacles or bits of old gold scrap but send them to their organization instead.
During the past year they have donated 1,100 pairs of new prescription eye glasses for the needy in 45 states. Four thousand pairs of glasses were sent to recognized welfare agencies and clinics to be redistributed. Through CARE's Assistance they sent over 2,000 pairs of eye glasses and 500 artificial eyes to Dr. Rambo, a missionary eye surgeon in India.
That is really quite a record of service and they are completely dependent on the public which knows about the organization and sends them old specs and bits of old gold. This work is sponsored by the Short Hills Junior Chamber Service League. Whatever money the organization has is derived solely from the sale of contributed precious metal.
Were you interested in reading the other day of Pakistan Day in Cortland, N.Y.? I was because that little southern tier New York State town seems many miles from Pakistan. Cortland has a population of 18,000 people. Pakistan's population is 72,842,165, or so they tell me, and yet Ambassador Amjad Ali went to Cortland to show his appreciation of the interest taken by this small American town in Pakistan, a country which was six years old when this interchange of interest began. How the children of this small town must have appreciated the wonderful turban made of six yards of white and gold muslin which the Ambassador put on, knowing I am sure what interest it would create. All through that area there will be an enormous added interest because of the visit of the Ambassador of Pakistan.
The City Planning Commission of New York City has proposed cutting the 1954 capital expenditures for new school's construction by some $30,000 which would reduce the new schools from 29 to 19. Quite naturally the Board of Education is seriously disturbed and objects. One group is probably thinking of the income that may be available whereas the other group is thinking of the overcrowding that will take place in the schools and the deterioration in education and health which will take place as a consequence.
It is bad enough that the teachers are underpaid, but if they work under impossible conditions, teachers can't be blamed for not wanting to stay in the profession. This same struggle may be going on in many parts of the United States, and while I realize that we have to carefully evaluate in every city what we really need, I cannot believe that the children should be the ones to suffer.