The Charlotte News

Monday, July 14, 1952


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via Relman Morin, that Democrats were arriving in Chicago for their convention, to begin the following Monday. The primary questions were whether Governor Adlai Stevenson would accept a draft by the delegates and whether the delegates would draft him. Presently, there were no forecasts regarding the nominee. The previous day, Governor Stevenson had said to a Minnesota delegate to the convention that no politician could say he would refuse a draft, consistent with other such statements he had made of late. Senator Richard Nixon, the Republican vice-presidential nominee, indicated that he believed Governor Stevenson was the strongest possible Democratic candidate.

The announced candidates, Senators Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, Richard Russell of Georgia, Robert Kerr of Oklahoma, Brien McMahon of Connecticut, Vice-President Alben Barkley and Averell Harriman, were expected to arrive in Chicago in the ensuing few days. Senator Edwin Johnson of Colorado, a supporter of Senator Russell, had indicated in a press conference this date that the Vice-President was "the man to beat" for the nomination. He said that he did not believe that Governor Stevenson would be a candidate. He indicated that the President would have a lot of influence at the convention, but he believed he would not seek to dominate it. He said that Senator Russell predicted a minimum of six ballots, and he believed, himself, that there would be at least ten, with Senator Kefauver, having the most committed delegates coming into the convention, leading in the early rounds.

Senator Walter George of Georgia, according to an anonymous informant, had been asked to nominate Senator Russell at the convention.

On page 11-A, a new Gallup poll showed that Democratic Party county chairmen favored Governor Stevenson for the nomination, but that Democratic voters preferred Senator Kefauver.

General Eisenhower was looking for a new campaign manager after reluctantly letting Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., step aside so that he could campaign for re-election to his own Massachusetts Senate seat, being contested by Congressman John F. Kennedy. The General announced that James Hagerty, who had served as the press secretary for Governor Dewey in 1948 during his presidential campaign, would be his press secretary for the campaign—eventually also becoming his press secretary as President. Arthur Vandenberg, Jr., was named executive assistant and Senators Frank Carlson of Kansas and Fred Seaton of Nebraska, as advisers, each of whom had an active role in the campaign for the nomination. Currently, campaign strategy was being coordinated by the current staff and by Arthur Summerfield of Michigan, the new RNC chairman. Former Senator Wayland "Curly" Brooks of Illinois indicated that the state would vote for the General in November if the Democrats drafted Governor Stevenson for the nomination—a prediction which would prove accurate, with the General carrying the state in the fall by ten percentage points. Mr. Brooks stated that it was so despite the Illinois delegation to the convention having favored Senator Taft initially by a vote of 59 to 1.

The President signed a bill authorizing 2.4 billion dollars for construction of new military bases, 1.8 billion of which was for the Air Force, mostly for secret bases from Japan to Europe. The bill provided for closer Congressional scrutiny over military construction, mostly involving secret spending, requiring the Senate and House Armed Services Committees to approve in advance the construction of classified or secret projects. The measure only authorized the construction program and the actual appropriation was contained in a separate bill, involving 740 million less than the President's recommendation.

The Government lifted controls this date on the price of all canned and frozen fruits and vegetables. Price Stabilizer Ellis Arnall indicated that the action had been forced by the decontrol amendment which Congress had added to the economic controls renewal legislation, exempting fruits and vegetables in fresh or processed form from price control.

At Newport News, Va., the Navy, in formal ceremonies, laid the keel of a giant aircraft carrier, the 50,000-ton U.S.S. Forrestal, the range of which could allow for its planes to reach the "innermost layers" of any aggressor nation. It was designed to launch and recover atom-bomb carrying planes and heavy, swift jet fighters which would protect the ship, itself. It was the first of two such giant carriers authorized by Congress and would cost 218 million dollars, slated to be completed in late 1954. Its deck was planned to extend 1,040 feet and be 252 feet wide, with a speed probably to exceed the 33 knots of the largest current aircraft carrier, the 45,000-ton Midway. The bridge of the new carrier would be retractable during landing operations, with closed-circuit television enabling steering and navigation. It was named for the late James Forrestal, former Secretary of the Navy and the first Secretary of Defense.

A spokesman for the United Steelworkers reported this date that union leaders regarded the industry's new offer of settlement as unsatisfactory. The details of the settlement were not disclosed but was reported to have proposed a watered-down version of the union shop, which required compulsory union membership, along with other undisclosed terms. A statement by the industry indicated that the suggestions, an effort to end the 43-day old strike, were still under consideration by the union.

In New York, a dark-suited man shot and killed a pretty blonde secretary at Columbia University this date, as she sat sipping orange juice and reading a letter from her sweetheart, a soldier in Korea. The assailant told a professor that he had just shot a girl, the incident having taken place on the ninth floor of the physics lab building. The man shot her four times with a .22 automatic pistol. Police suspected that he was a jealous suitor.

In Forest City, Ark., the previous day, a 13-year old boy thrust his knee into a small hole in the side wall of the municipal swimming pool about seven feet underwater, where it then became stuck, causing him to drown before lifeguards could extricate him.

In Fairbanks, Alaska, four or more persons were believed dead and several more reported missing after an early morning hotel fire, as guests estimated that up to 50 persons might have been burned to death among the approximately 250 occupants.

In Albany, N.Y., a dentist treated a patient on the northern tip of Greenland, more than 2,500 miles distant, without leaving his office, after responding to an SOS sent via ham radio, instructing the patient on how to care for his badly abscessed tooth.

A Fargo, N. D., banker was named as the 76th head of the Protective Order of Elks at their annual convention in New York.

As pictured, a National Guard plane accidentally dropped two auxiliary gas tanks into Boston's Back Bay District, resulting in the demolition of a new Studebaker convertible, hit squarely by one of the tanks, while the other fell harmlessly across the street onto the lawn of an apartment. One man had been blown ten feet into the air by the concussion, but no one else was seriously injured. (Perhaps the bullnose target on the front of the Studebaker attracted the falling tanks.)

We note that a picture appears of Senator Taft emerging from his suite at the Hilton Hotel in Chicago after his defeat at the convention on Friday. By dint of happenstance, former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens passed away at age 99 on July 16, 2019, on the day this is written, after suffering a stroke the previous day. The grandfather and father of Justice Stevens founded the Stevens Hotel in 1927, which became the Chicago Hilton in 1945.

As we have suggested many times previously, Justice Stevens served the Court honorably from his appointment by President Ford in 1975, replacing retiring Justice William O. Douglas, always serving justice in an unbiased and intellectually honest manner as the cases came before the Court, rather than forming opinions from any political or ideological agenda on the basis of a preconceived outcome stretching the law and Constitution to fit.

We urge re-reading Justice Stevens's New York Times op-ed piece from a year ago, favoring repeal of the outmoded Second Amendment, a worthy aim for saving lives otherwise to be cut short by bullets issued from guns in the hands of the immature, the reckless or the insane, having no utilitarian value in a modern, civilized society, except in the hands of police, military or National Guard "well-regulated militias". If not repealed outright, it ought at least be clarified by amendment to fit our present society, long since ceased from being hunter-gatherers on the untamed frontier.

On the editorial page, "Senator Nixon, the GOP's No. 2 Man" finds that in choosing as their vice-presidential nominee Senator Nixon, the Republicans had placed geography and campaigning ability above the "ability to assume the awful responsibility of national and world leadership" in the event that the Vice-President had to accede to the Presidency. Senator Nixon had been acceptable to General Eisenhower and to both factions of the party. His presence on the ticket would likely ensure that the Republicans could carry California, with its 32 electoral votes, which had gone to the Democrats in 1948—despite the presence on the ticket of Governor Earl Warren. And Mr. Nixon was "young, vigorous, with a record of hard—and successful, campaigning."

During his six years in Congress, he had generally supported the Administration's European and military policy, having voted for the Truman Doctrine of military aid for Greece and Turkey, the Marshall Plan, the draft, universal military training, and the major treaties. He had, however, also favored reduction of Point Four aid to underdeveloped countries.

His domestic record would be more pleasing to business than to labor. He had voted for "fair trade", the states' rights to tidelands oil, a decrease in public housing funds, Taft-Hartley, the Natural Gas Act amendment which exempted independent producers from the Federal Power Commission's jurisdiction, and exemption of railroad rates from antitrust legislation. He had also voted against the proposed extension of Social Security in 1948, the loan to cooperative provisions of the Housing Act, slaughter quotas, creation of a Department of Health, and the reorganization of the IRB. He had favored the plans, which had recently been vetoed by the Senate, to take postmasters, customs collectors and U.S. marshals out of patronage politics and place them under the Civil Service system. He had also favored U.S. participation in construction of the St. Lawrence Seaway, statehood for Alaska and Hawaii, and home rule for the District of Columbia.

On civil rights, he had voted for an FEPC which could investigate and make recommendations only, without power of compulsory enforcement, and had voted for a bill to outlaw poll taxes. He had, however, supported the recent immigration bill sponsored by Senator Pat McCarran of Nevada, which had placed severe restrictions on immigration from countries from which refugees living under depressed conditions and totalitarian regimes were desperately seeking asylum, a bill which had ultimately passed after the President's veto had been overridden by both houses.

The Senator had become widely known as a result of his anti-Communist stance, generally having been credited with putting Alger Hiss in jail in 1950. He had co-sponsored the Mundt-Nixon bill, passed by the House and rejected by the Senate, which would have required registration of all organizations deemed by the Attorney General to be Communist fronts, and of all members of the Communist Party. In his first press conference after being nominated, he had stated that the fight against Communism would be the "great issue" of the campaign. And he had made that the major issue in his 1950 Senatorial contest against Congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas, who had vigorously opposed the Mundt-Nixon bill.

It neglects to point out that he had engaged in the same tactics, seeking to wrap his opponent up with Communist sympathies, during his first run for public office in 1946 against Congressman Jerry Voorhis, linking him to funding by the CIO PAC, considered at the time a catch-phrase for being sympathetic to Communists within the CIO unions. In the 1950 Senate race, there was no mistaking the intent of the phrase which his supporters used to describe Ms. Douglas, "the pink lady".

It concludes: "Perhaps after a little fatherly advice from his senior partner, the young Senator will decide it is not so in this campaign."

"Pressure Mounting in Steel Strike" tells of the 43-day old steel strike starting to throttle the economy of the country, with the national income having lost more than two billion dollars, with one and a half million workers, most of them in allied industries and services, having been idled because of the shortage of steel. Defense officials had warned that ammunition reserves were dwindling.

During the weekend, the Government had approved a five dollar per ton price increase for steel and the big steel companies had made a new offer to the United Steelworkers, though its details were not yet known. It was believed, however, that the industry had expressed a willingness to accept some modified form of the union shop, the remaining issue reportedly blocking a settlement.

Pressure to resolve the impasse was mounting from customers of the steel companies and from the rank-and-file of the union, who were beginning to suffer real hardship, especially concerned about the coming winter, as there would be inadequate raw material on hand for the production of steel if there was insufficient time of supply by ships before the Great Lakes froze again.

It was unlikely that the President was going to seek an 80-day injunction of the strike under Taft-Hartley, despite the urging of both houses of Congress for him to do so, and so the people could only hope that the pressures were sufficient to induce both management and labor to reach agreement on a new contract.

"Virginia Slugfest Nears an End" tells of the bitter campaign for the Democratic nomination for the Senate seat held by Senator Harry F. Byrd, being contested by Francis Pickens Miller, who had achieved national attention initially in 1949 in his effort to defeat the Byrd-sponsored John Stuart Battle in the gubernatorial race. Both candidates had been hurling nasty charges at one another, the previous week Mr. Miller having called Senator Byrd "Mr. Republican". Editorial writers in the state had poured forth opinions, as had countless letters to the editors.

It predicts that, with longevity of service and his "benevolent machine" on his side, it was likely that Senator Byrd would win the nomination. But it notes that in the 1949 primary, Mr. Battle had polled only 42 percent of the vote, while his three opponents, including Mr. Miller, had garnered the rest. The election would be held the next day.

"New Grass Roots Enthusiasm" remarks on many spontaneous local expressions of approval of the nomination of General Eisenhower, as exampled by a statement by the chairman of the Mecklenburg County Republican Party, saying that he had a lot of calls from Democrats and Republicans wanting to know what they could do for the campaign, where the "Ike clubs" were located and what kinds of rallies would be held on the General's behalf. (Well, what did you expect him to say, "Gosh durn it, looks like we're losers again, as everyone hereabouts is morbidly silent as if someone died in the house"?)

It finds that this interest was the result of the Eisenhower appeal, with millions of Americans wanting to take part in his "crusade".

If President Truman started talking about leading a "crusade", you would be having a field day of sardonic response, and if there is one thing which is intolerable in a newspaper editorial, it is hypocritical inconsistency. Thus, the dedicated reader can read the rest of this piece of Eisenhower-Nixon fan mail for themselves. It only reiterates that which the editorial page must have said at least a hundred times since the prior January when the General indicated his willingness to accept the Republican nomination, that he had a chance to attract the Southern vote and establish a "real two-party system" in the region, while having the best chance to lead Republicans to victory in November.

Pardon our cynicism about that concept at this point, because, in large part thanks to the chicanery of Mr. Nixon in later years, notably in 1968, that "real two-party system", with a few national elections as exceptions, usually when the Republicans had so wrecked the economy that it was impossible to pull the lever for any Republican presidential nominee, has, in large part, especially in the deep South, gone the other way entirely and become a one-party system for the Republicans, especially of the intensely conservative variety, in some instances bordering, if not crossing over to, actual fascism. What else do you call this neo-nationalist "America First" mentality? hearkening back to the days of Charles Lindbergh's mass rallies before Pearl Harbor, after that boob had accepted a decoration from Hitler and believed, along with John Foster Dulles, that the Nazis represented the "wave of the future", a counter-balancing force to Communism in Europe, at a time when the Nazi atrocities were not unknown to Americans who read the newspapers. That mentality is the most representative face of the Republican Party today, especially in the deep South, hearkening back to the days of Nixon and his "silent majority".

A piece of from the Dothan (Ala.) Eagle, titled "SRNPM", tells of a movement by the "Society for the Rehabilitation of Neglected Positive Modifiers" in England having reached America and attracting some support among those who understood its purposes. The SRNPM took the position that the English language contained too many "no" words and not enough "yes" words, and that many words which began as a positive modifier, had become negative.

The Rocky Mountain Herald, the oldest weekly newspaper in Colorado, was supporting the campaign, asking:

"Where are the nocent pleasures, the nocuous remarks? What about sipid voices … delible blemishes and provised entertainment? And ought not gamblers to operate with punity? What about the estimable delight of witnessing a whole evening of entertainment on your neighbor's television set?

"Let's be ane in our questions, and, at worst, let's be sufferable bores, but where are the pervious defenses of yesteryear?"

The piece adds:

"Let's portune those who use the language to become more positive. Never mind the plications that it's reactionary. And let's do it mediately. Unless we take the itiative we'll be caught in a passe which is the evitable result of getting a portant campaign off without the proper spiration."

All of that is precise use of proper English with semantic precision, consonant with becilism.

Drew Pearson, having returned from Chicago and the Republican convention, suggests that the President had finally decided on the various candidates vying for the Democratic nomination, and that he might yet cast his hat into the ring if certain candidates appeared headed for the nomination otherwise. Those candidates included Senator Richard Russell of Georgia, for whom the President had the highest personal regard, considering him one of the ablest men in the Senate, and, but for his position on civil rights, would consider him the best candidate. But, under the circumstances, he believed he would lose most of the Northern vote, which would be necessary for a Democratic victory.

Another such unacceptable candidate was Senator Robert Kerr of Oklahoma, of whom the President was also fond personally, but his links with big oil and natural gas lobbies, being a partner in Kerr-McGee, and his having pulled wires to raise the price of natural gas to consumers, ruled him out as a presidential nominee.

Vice-President Alben Barkley was considered by the President too old, at 74, to be the party standard bearer, even though he had stood by the basic party liberalism more than any other Southern leader.

House Speaker Sam Rayburn, at 70, was ruled out for the same reason.

The President had picked three Democrats he would support for the nomination, including Senator Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, for whom the President initially had lacked enthusiasm but had come to realize that the Senator talked and acted like a winner, having not committed any mistake in his several months of campaigning since February, standing in contrast to General Eisenhower's recent crack about the French, which would cost him the French-Canadian vote in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and New Hampshire in the general election and also had undone whatever buildup the General had given NATO while in Paris. In addition, Senator Kefauver had supported the New Deal and Fair Deal more than any other Southern Senator.

The President would also support Governor Adlai Stevenson of Illinois, even though he remained somewhat miffed at the Governor for being coy and trying to divorce himself from the President after the President had initially favored him early on for the nomination. The President continued to believe, however, that he would be a strong liberal candidate with a real chance of victory.

Averell Harriman was another candidate whom the President could support, even though he had believed that he had no chance of being elected when he first began his campaign. Lately, however, he had shown a flair for campaigning, plus persistence and courage which had caused the President to change his mind, at least in part. He still did not believe that Mr. Harriman was the most practical candidate, but found him the most idealistic and so acceptable.

Of those three, the President had expressed no preference, and any combination thereof on the ticket would be acceptable to him. If any of them made a deal with those on his taboo list, however, he would be unhappy.

Governor Dewey had taken more abuse than anyone else at the Republican convention. He had smiled when Senator Everett Dirksen of Illinois had prompted a storm of boos against the Governor for having led the Republican Party twice to defeat, in 1944 and 1948. Mr. Pearson remarks that even William Jennings Bryan, who failed three times as the Democratic nominee, causing him to be unpopular with Democrats toward the end, had never received such a "public whipping". He indicates that the inside fact was that the candidacy of General Eisenhower would have gotten nowhere without Governor Dewey's efforts in support of it. The Governor had handled almost every important move in the Eastern section of the country regarding the campaign, and had gone over Governor John Fine's head by personally appealing to the Pennsylvania local leaders, resulting in the switch of that key delegation to the General. Governor Dewey had also kept his own New York delegation in line, warning potential dissidents that they would not have a state job if they cast their vote for Senator Taft. He had raised thousands of dollars and used the influence of steel companies and powerful New York bankers to support the campaign, and had enlisted his former campaign manager, Herbert Brownell, in the effort, as the latter knew more about organizing conventions than any other Republicans around, enabling the smooth-running machine which finally knocked out the Taft forces.

Joseph C. Harsch writes in the Christian Science Monitor of Democrats, including the President, watching the Republican convention the prior week, with plenty to please them in what they had seen. The greatest disappointment at the White House was that the keynote address of General MacArthur had failed to precipitate a stampede to nominate him, either for the presidency or vice-presidency.

Aides of the President had been going through confidential files of the war period and turned up a number of reports and recommendations regarding General MacArthur and his foreign policy, which, if presented to the public, would show him to have been a prime proponent of the Yalta position. It had long been a source of controversy that President Roosevelt had given the Russians concessions in the Yalta conference in early 1945, to obtain Russian participation in the Pacific war. The reason often stated was that the military advisers to the President had counseled this move to avoid heavy U.S. casualties in any ground attack against Japan, deemed at the time necessary ultimately for obtaining surrender, it being before the mid-July Trinity test of the atomic bomb. These military advisers, however, had never been identified, and the Democrats were now saying that General MacArthur was among those who were most insistent on the need for Russian participation in the Pacific war. The published diaries of the late Secretary of the Navy, later Secretary of Defense, James Forrestal had indicated that the General had urged him to adopt this view shortly after Yalta.

These Presidential aides said that the records would show that the General had been particularly insistent that the Russians should be brought into Manchuria, a move which prepared the first great base for the Chinese Communist armies.

Thus, when the Republicans did not alter their foreign policy plank to accommodate the views of General MacArthur, the Democrats felt that their best target was disappearing.

The White House also regretted the apparent trend of the Republicans away from the Old Guard to the younger set. The President believed that these younger Republicans could attract many voters away from the Democrats in the general election.

They had also been saddened by the rules change which had been adopted by the convention, which took away the charge of corruption from the nomination process, an issue which otherwise could have diluted the corruption charge against the Democrats, of which the Republicans would make an issue in the coming campaign.

The realists among the Democrats appreciated that a new and revitalized Republican Party could emerge from the convention, but they also believed that the Democrats still had a reasonable chance of winning another election and perhaps modernizing and reforming their own party in the process.

Dorothy Barclay, writing in the New York Times, tells of some parents, especially fathers, studiously avoiding poetry, regarding it as "long-haired". She regards it as a shame, as children had an instinct for rhyme and rhythm, combined with imaginative speech which could brighten the present and provide a mental store for the future. She indicates that a number of adults to whom she had talked could remember having fun and experiencing wonder, coupled with a little pain, in their experiences with varied types of poetry. One woman had said that she had always loved A Child's Garden of Verses, but that there had always seemed more in them than the poems actually said, puzzling her in a "painful-pleasant way".

She needed to consult with the philosophers on the pleasure principle, and realize that pain and pleasure cannot logically coexist in the same being at the same time, that in the simultaneous application of stimuli promoting both reactions, one must always give way to the other, pain usually being the more dominant sensation, depending on the intensity of the stimulus. But we digress.

Francis Clarke Sayers, superintendent of work with children at the New York Public Library, and two children's librarians at different branches, had informed that poetry was used in their programs and that they found that children enjoyed it very much and that the less self-conscious one was in introducing it, the better was the reaction. Poems and rhymes were interspersed among the stories told to the children at regular story hours, to provide a change of pace. The librarians stressed that poetry need not be solemn and that nonsense verse was among the most popular. Parents need not concern themselves with the fact that children would not understand the language of the more advanced poems, as work at the library had shown that children who understood little English responded to the music and rhythm of the words, even without an understanding of their meaning.

Many parents had complained about Mother Goose for its use of archaic language, such as "sixpence" and "stiles", causing the children to whom it was read to ask constantly the meaning of each foreign word.

Parents tended to get self-conscious when they began reading their children poetry, as they believed it had to be read in some special manner. The librarians believed that a great deal of the success of the reading depended on the parents' feeling about that which they were reading. "By tone and attitude, it would appear, mom and dad can queer many a childhood classic with their young." (We cannot recall ever seeing the word "queer" being used as a verb. Would it not be better phrased to say, "can estrange many a childhood classic from their young"? The last thing we want is for the perception to be conveyed that poetry is somehow "queer", in any sense of the word. But we digress.)

She concludes that for the best results, it was important for parents to believe in, like and have a feeling for what they were reading, and in so doing many times inducing the parents, themselves, to discover the delights of poetry for the first time as they sought appropriate reading material for their children.

A letter writer indicates that when he had come home from the Army in 1946, he had sought a cab license in Charlotte and been informed that he would have to go before the City Council, which he then did and was informed that he would have to show a need for more cabs in the city. He had asked for only two cabs to begin his company, but was told that they were not needed. Since that time, another cab company had been formed which had more cabs than were in his original request. He believes, being black, that racial bias was the cause for rejection of his application. He indicates that he loved Charlotte as his home of ten years and hoped that this "black mark against the city" would not continue.

A letter writer from Clarkton comments on a another letter of July 9, objecting to Bible study in the public schools, finding the prior letter writer to have taken a "narrow view". He asserts that the Bible was the greatest piece of civilized literature ever printed and represented a masterpiece of the English language, such that any fair-minded person would support its use in the public schools.

Shakespeare works just as well for that purpose.

A letter writer responds to a letter of July 10 which had urged the Park & Recreation Commission to reconsider its ban on model airplane flying in the public parks of the city because of the noise generated. She expounds at some length on the subject, indicating her reluctance to accept that model airplane flying was the "last bit of decent free entertainment" available for July Fourth. She indicates that the main point in objecting to the flying of the planes near her home had not been to eliminate the noise on July Fourth, per se, but rather the practice on any other afternoon, and particularly on Sundays. She indicates that the airplanes had been flown in an area immediately behind her house.

Well, the remedy seems clear: buy one of those new-fangled high fidelity units, perhaps augmented by a couple of speaker horns aimed toward the field, and put on the entirety of Wagner's Die Walkure, while they are flying their aeroplanes. Bound to scare them off the field. Either that or they will form guerrilla units, with a tunnel network leading into your backyard, from which they will emerge and fly the new model jets, as pictured with the previous letter, right into your house, bombing the kitchen.

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