The Charlotte News

Saturday, February 22, 1947


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that Senator Robert Taft had announced his intention to vote against the confirmation of David Lilienthal as chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission. Other Senators on the Atomic Energy Committee indicated their doubts that Senator Taft would have much impact on the votes of other members.

Albert Einstein expressed his support of Mr. Lilienthal and said that failure to confirm him would produce grave consequences in international politics.

The death toll from the winter snowstorm which had hit the East Coast continued to rise, with 13 deaths reported in New Jersey, 18 in Pennsylvania, and nine in Connecticut, a total of 51 in all. The center of the storm had moved into the North Atlantic after producing snow for 25 hours.

In Moscow, a newspaper criticized the BBC for skewing the facts in its recently begun Russian-language broadcasts into Russia. No comment had been made on the American broadcasts from Munich, which had begun the previous Monday.

In Tokyo, the brother of former Premier Hideki Tojo was arrested on a charge of vagrancy, along with other persons so charged, after being found sleeping in a boxcar. He said that he had been unemployed since the surrender.

In Birmingham, Ala., an infant boy, left to sleep in the kitchen of an apartment, was found dead the next morning, killed by rats. The parents said that it was warmer in the kitchen and that they heard no outcry in the night.

In Des Moines, a woman was convicted of a robbery accomplished on January 22 by hypodermic syringe at the Des Moines Bank & Trust Co. She got away with $2,950 after telling the bank personnel that she would blow up the place with the syringe if she were not given the money. The offense carried a mandatory life sentence. The syringe was subsequently found to contain only mouthwash. She had claimed that she robbed the bank on an irresistible impulse after initially going there only to obtain a loan, if not to get help from Speed.

You will be paying interest on that loan for awhile.

In Havana, Charles "Lucky" Luciano, the former overlord of New York gangland syndicates, was arrested and interned in an immigration camp. The arrest followed the U.S. cessation of narcotics shipments to Cuba out of concern that they might fall into the hands of Mr. Luciano, presumably in lieu of the hands of Sr. Batista, also known as Joey Jiminy, the Effulgent. After being convicted in 1936 by New York City District Attorney Thomas Dewey and sentenced to 30 to 50 years in prison, Mr. Luciano had his sentence commuted in 1946 by Governor Thomas Dewey and had been living in Italy until coming to Havana.

State Representative James Vogler of Charlotte urged that the City forthwith set aside revenue collected from parking meters for construction of parking garages downtown. He suggested that some portion of ABC revenue from controlled liquor sales, if approved, also should be devoted to the parking garages.

The Mecklenburg County Grand Jury was set to deliver to a Superior Court judge its report on law enforcement agencies, the city schools, and the safety of public buildings.

Tom Fesperman of The News tells of a maid being startled when she went to change the pillowcases in a room at the Hotel Charlotte, ran to report her find to the manager, who then proceeded to count out $5,000 to $6,000 in cash. It was placed in the vault. A man later called to say that he had forgotten his money in the pillowcase. When he got it back, he gave the maid $50.

On the editorial page, "Highway Safety Can Be Legislated" tells of the curtailed travel within the United States during the war from rationing of gasoline and tires, plus lower speed limits, having reduced the accident fatalities enough to compensate for the battle fatalities of the war. But now, with the cars back up to speed, the accident rate had so increased to take up the slack, leaving the number of fatalities since the war at the same rate as it had been for the duration.

The piece finds it therefore encouraging that the North Carolina Legislature was taking up the issue of traffic safety by proposing regular semi-annual inspections of motor vehicles, compulsory financial responsibility, quadrennial renewal of licenses, and stiffer potential fines and penalties for speeding and reckless and drunk driving.

"What a Difference a Week Makes" tells of Time having first found "complicated" the attacks on David Lilienthal as a Communist sympathizer, providing some support for the investigation undertaken by Senator Kenneth McKellar and Senators of the Atomic Energy Committee, sitting in judgment of his confirmation as chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission. It spoke of a real danger of encroaching Communism within the country and the need to ferret it out, relating the story in the context of the HUAC investigation into the activities of avowed Communist Gerhard Eisler.

Then a week later, in its February 24 edition, Time had turned 180 degrees the other direction, giving tribute to Mr. Lilienthal's prior public service as head of TVA, which had won the war. The editors suddenly had found Mr. Lilienthal's character spotless and the attacks on him motivated by partisanship and private business interests wishing to have atomic energy under their control.

"Falsetto Voice in the Cheering Section" tells of the president of the senior class at Central High School in Charlotte having become a father. Yet, it was not so unnerving as it might have been at a different time, the sports pages, with regular photographs of wives of college players, having conditioned the thinking on the matter.

It would take some time, it suggests, for returning veterans, now either completing high school or college, to get through their educations. Meanwhile, the public mind would have to adjust to seeing married family men in such settings.

The fact had led to some strange manifestations, such as the observation recorded by News sportswriter Furman Bisher, who had recounted that the wives of the Oklahoma football players at the Gator Bowl in December had observed the N.C. State players on the bus and remarked openly that they appeared small to them. Coaches could not handle such psychological warfare.

At least the returning veterans were finishing their educations and would not become another post-World War I "lost generation".

A piece from the Greensboro Daily News, titled "What a State Lives By", tells of the North Carolina Department of Conservation and Development having received a request from a schoolboy in Rennes, France, seeking information, based on a soldier's account of his home state provided the boy during the war. The soldier had later been killed in action at Nantes.

The piece hopes that the boy would temper his expectations anent the state with the realization that homesick memories color any place out of the imagination with a fanciful array of descriptive adjectives, not to be confused with reality. Yet, the state had its qualities which were indelibly positive, leading the late Ambassador O. Max Gardner to state that he was "an incurable North Carolinian."

Drew Pearson tells of Secretary of State Marshall having kept a closed session of the House Foreign Affairs Committee rapt in attention to his monologue on foreign affairs, such that they had time but for a few hasty questions before the bell had rung to call them into session for a roll-call. The questions they had prepared on Palestine and Russia went unasked.

The Secretary stated that he would continue the Byrnes policy of firmness with Russia. The treaty with Austria would be the first order of business at the March Moscow Foreign Ministers Council meeting. Within three years, he predicted, the German people would become self-sufficient, ending the need for loans and food from the U.S. For the present, the U.S. had to continue to feed the world for some years to come.

The U.S. would need to be more cautious with respect to Palestine now that Britain had agreed to put the matter before the U.N. for resolution.

He also spoke of his disillusionment with the situation in China, with civil war ongoing between the Nationalists of Chiang and the Communists under Mao.

As the meeting ended, members urged Secretary Marshall to return for further discussion and he stated that he might, provided he had time in between preparation for the Moscow Conference.

He next tells of the price of shoes, highest in 20 years since the end of controls, having gone higher because of the efforts of Nevada Senators Pat McCarran and George Malone to increase exports of hides. Both Senators had received large contributions from Nevada cattlemen and were acting in accord with those interests, despite the fact that leather was needed domestically to bring down the price of shoes.

He imparts that Eleanor Roosevelt and son James had been hired as consultants for a screen biography to be produced on FDR by the Kennedy-Buchman firm, affiliated with Columbia Pictures.

Marquis Childs discusses the hearings on restrictive labor legislation before the Senate Labor Committee, with freshman Senator Irving Ives of New York, with an impressive pro-labor background, trying to effect among Republicans and conservative Democrats agreement on a moderate stance toward equalizing the power of management with the increased power of the unions.

The unions had taken up the old cry of management, that the Government was undertaking too much control. CIO head Philip Murray had told the committee that if he could sit down with AFL head William Green, they could come to a resolution which would effectively end jurisdictional strikes without legislation banning them.

The invitation suggested that AFL and CIO were moving toward merger, in which case there would be a tendency toward statism in one big union, that which everyone, including members of the committee, professed a desire to avoid.

Harold Ickes discusses the confirmation hearings of David Lilienthal as chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, finds the attack on his integrity, suggesting him to be sympathetic with Communists, to be an absurdity. By the fact of Senator Kenneth McKellar's attack on Mr. Lilienthal, a black-and-white picture had been drawn by the press and public, such that Mr. Lilienthal was portrayed as angelic, while Senator McKellar was cast necessarily as the villain of the piece.

Mr. Ickes could not stand to have a person in charge of nuclear energy who was so spotless of character and above all of humanity, and so hopes that the assailants of Mr. Lilienthal's character might relent that he could be brought off of his pedestal.

In the meantime, Mr. Ickes would listen to the voice of God, as filtered through the press, and continue to side with Mr. Lilienthal so that he could be remembered when the latter handed out free samples of atomic energy.

A letter writer comments on the bitter irony that Brotherhood Week had been darkened by the news of the lynching of Willie Earle in Pickens, S.C., on the previous Monday. He urges that the killers be caught and that brotherhood be practiced all of the year.

A letter writer remarks that FDR and the GI's had been loved by the peoples of all of the liberated countries during the war and since.

A letter writer comments on the front page having carried a story stating that Attorney General Tom Clark was waging an aggressive campaign against monopolistic practices of business, while on page three there appeared a story on the bill, sponsored by Gaston County Congressman A. L. Bulwinkle, to exempt railroads from the anti-trust legislation. The reader wants Senator Charles Tobey's attack on the Bulwinkle bill also included.

A letter from the executive secretary of the National Dunking Association advocates dunking for fun as a panacea for shyness, general depression and despondency.

Their slogan was, "Get out of your shell—dunk!"

But you might be too short to dunk. Then what? Hang yourself by your lost puppy's leash?

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