DECEMBER 1, 1942
WASHINGTON, Monday—Yesterday was a quiet day. On Saturday evening, one of our sons, who has just returned from a very long tour of duty, and his wife spent the night and we enjoyed hearing all about his adventures.
On Sunday, in Hyde Park, I tried to make many of my Christmas plans for the various places in which we celebrate the Christmas season. I enjoyed walking in the woods, though most of the leaves are now gone and one has to enjoy the winter beauty of bare trees. Today I am back in Washington holding a press conference, speaking on the radio with Mrs. Esther Tufty, lunching with the Women's National Press Club, and doing various other things the rest of the day.
It is curious how just seeing people takes up a good many hours every day. One of the great opportunities afforded one living in the White House is the chance of knowing, seeing and talking with people who are doing things all over the world. At the same time, one may see a great many people who are keenly interested in activities on a national, state or local scale in our country.
I sometimes think one can have a better perspective of the range of human interests here than anywhere else in the world. It is true that in London, because of the influx of people from various conquered countries, you get a sense of touching closely the points of view of more European nations.
On the other hand, in this hemisphere, the Far East and the European Continents seems to touch each other more closely, and the North and South American people have a far more intimate relationship with each other. On the whole, I think one gets a more complete perspective here, if one wishes to have it, than anywhere else in the world.
This gives us, as a nation, a very great responsibility to prepare ourselves to understand and interpret to each other the various people who may meet here more easily than anywhere else in the world. It is a role which does not permit of isolationism in thought or deed, but which requires of us an ability to think and to feel with other nations, for we cannot interpret what we do not understand. I think this role is particularly fitted to the natural gifts of women and they should recognize their power and the responsibility which accompanies it.