OCTOBER 7, 1955
CHARLOTTE, N.C.—I may think at times that we are on the road dealing with very important subjects regarding the United Nations and its agencies, but I learned in Miami on Tuesday that even in a meeting for the United Nations the audience must be told at intervals what the latest baseball score is. Then when it was announced that the Dodgers had won and that there was wild excitement and celebration in Brooklyn the people in our audience, cheered for the Dodgers and completely forgot the U.N.!
On Wednesday morning I was called at six o'clock, and while I dressed and packed to fly northward I saw the most beautiful banks of clouds rising out of the ocean, tinted many colors by the sun. As they dissolved the sun itself came up and I felt that the beauty of the morning made up for the early hour at which we had to start for the airport.
While we waited for our plane, which was to take us here, we sat on stools in the airport restaurant and sipped our orange juice and drank our tea or coffee as we debated whether toast or doughnuts were what we could get most quickly.
We reached Jacksonville in the rain, but by the time we arrived in Charlotte the rain had stopped and we were greeted by Mayor Van Every and Mrs. Charles Tillet. Mrs. Tillet and her husband for many years have been the backbone of all that is good in their community, and since Mr. Tillet's death Mrs. Tillet has carried on in his tradition. As a member of the American Bar Association he fought against the proposed Bricker amendment and against the attitude of that organization on the Covenant of Human Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The mayor drove us to the hotel and we had time to shake out an evening dress and hang it up before we started for the Charlotte Women's Club. Then at the door we shook hands with some 200 people who attended the luncheon.
North Carolina has a situation all its own insofar as international affairs are concerned. A movement was started many years ago to coordinate all groups interested in international affairs. Now, while we have a state chairman for the American Association for the United Nations, the group has grown rather slowly—but separately—because of the fact that there exists this overall organization. We, therefore, had to find a way of cooperation with that organization. The mayor has appointed a chairman for United Nations Day and United Nations Week here, and the group we met with today is the one making preparations for a really elaborate celebration for this 10th anniversary of the U.N.
After the lunch, at which both Mr. Clark Eichelberger and I spoke, I did a number of radio and television recordings—five in all. Now we are back at the hotel writing this column and preparing for a 5:30 press conference, a six o'clock dinner, and an eight p.m. mass meeting at which we speak on the United Nations and its next 10 years.
It is interesting to find that the question most frequently asked here is about the recent French walkout. That makes me surmise that people are really afraid that such a walkout might weaken the U.N. or that it might suggest to other nations that when they are displeased they should take the same course.
I am impressed with the fact that people want the U.N. to function well, even though they do not know very much about what it can do or how it functions. And that makes it more important than ever to inform them. These are the people who must be kept aware of its activities and of the possibilities of participation in its work.