The Charlotte News

Tuesday, May 3, 1938


Site Ed. Note: "Mary of Scotland" by Maxwell Anderson, from which is quoted the "Text for a Parley", had been made into a film directed by John Ford in 1936--a film which does not hold up very well today in our estimation should you ever perchance hap to lay midnight eyes to it, for want of anything else to do upon that hour. Much better known films from Anderson's plays were "Key Largo", "The Bad Seed", and "Anne of the Thousand Days"--still only the first one of that trio holding up very well over time. No matter. The point was made by Cash from the play's text--and the play's, after all, the thing.

And just as with Mary Queen of Scots, (though not intending by it to set her cast with these), Hitler and Mussolini themselves did not hold up so well over time, just as the quoted text would Nostradamusize.

And insofar as "On the Insurance Front" goes, we take great umbrage at the notion that anyone should raise objection to solemn recognition of Kindness to Pet Kangaroos Week.

We once were standing in our yard when we saw a kangaroo chomping on vegetation over the neighbors' fence from about thirty yards from our position.

We had to think that it was quite odd to see a pet kangaroo in our neighbors' yard, quite odd, indeed, as we were not in Australia, mates, but somewhere in the greenish brown hills of northern California. But there it was, to our eyes, all perched on the fence like that, up on its hind legs, leaning over the pickets, munching on the vegetation on the other side. We saw it plainly in broad daylight.

Then, after quizzically viewing it for a bit, ensconced there as it was in this strange environ for it, far away from its native land, we observed this creature with brown, close-cropped fur to suddenly pull back from the fence, set itself down on all fours and scamper away into the nearby wood. We noted then as it did so that all fours hit the ground in proper firing order, 1-4-3-2, not hippety-hoppety-like, fronts and rears in tandem, and were of the same length--and that it had no apparent pouch characteristic of the standard marsupial of which we were sure it was as it stood up against the fence eating its provender of berries and leaves and such and what-not.

Perhaps, after all, though accurate we thought we were in the moment, we were incorrect in our observation and so had to revise and adjust our frame of reference for the future on such creatures with brown, close-cropped fur.

Parley, mates?

Not on your life. Instead, we should wont to say, bring us that horizon--and really bad eggs.

Drink up, me hearty joho...

Order Of Crimes*

After waiting around for a time, Charlotte policemen broke down a door at 121 Brevard Court and at 3:45 o'clock Sunday morning arrested some 15 men who were engaged in a poker game.


David Harris and Abraham Young, Negroes, engaged in a gun fight in the 400 block of N. Summit Avenue. Both were taken to the Good Samaritan Hospital suffering from wounds, those of Harris serious ones.

Isaac Carr, Negro, was cut with a knife by another Negro at Caton and Johnson Streets, and taken to the Good Samaritan.

Thelma Allison, Negro woman, was cut with a knife by another Negro on N. Summit Avenue, and taken to Good Samaritan Hospital. She died yesterday.

Two other Negro women were cut with knives by other Negroes.

The police can't, of course, do more than one thing at a time, but "first things first" is a good rule to follow in that contingency. The first thing to be done in this city is to put down violent crime in the Negro districts. Gamblers' victims, after all, are willing victims.

Same Old Franklin D.

To the chairman of the Social Security Board, the President has written a letter, suggesting improvements to the act. The President concedes, candidly, that it is not yet to be called "complete and final." He believes, rather, that--

"We should be constantly seeking to perfect and strengthen it in the light of our accumulating experience and growing appreciation of social needs."

Ah! Then the President recognizes the danger of siphoning vast sums from employers and workers, earmarking them for satisfaction of social security liabilities--and spending them for the government's running expenses? The President has perceived the inordinate burdens social security imposes upon businesses whose main expense is labor expense, while the money-changers in the temple and the fiscal royalists contribute little, comparatively? Nope.

Nope, the President suggests to the board that it commence payments to its clients insured against old age before the date called for in their contract with the Government, that it pay larger benefits in some cases, that it extend eligibility for benefits in others.

Martial Law

The American Civil Liberties Union, which is sometimes accused of being dominated by Communists, may have its own purposes in mind when it urges a Federal statute defining such terms as "emergency" and "riot" and "insurrection" and rigidly specifying the circumstances in which the Governor of a State may order out the militia.

But it would be hard to quarrel with it when it proposes utterly to abolish the authority of Governors to make a declaration of "martial law." This practice has been grossly and notoriously abused in such cases as those of Huey Long in Louisiana, Alfalfa Bill Murray and Jack Walton in Oklahoma, and Eugene Talmadge in Georgia. It is so commonly used that most people think, indeed, that it is involved in ordering out the militia. But in fact it goes much farther than that and suspends the jurisdiction of the civil courts and converts militia officers into judges, and that plainly violates our whole system of government. For that matter, in truth, it violates a prohibition contained in most of the State constitutions--a prohibition, however, which has nowhere been implemented by statute.

An Intermediate Goal

When Dr. Walsh, the noted hospital consultant, makes his recommendations on what should be done in Charlotte, the cold fact is that they are going to be academic unless he takes into consideration a new Presbyterian Hospital of between 150 and 200 beds. This hospital is going to be built. There is no doubt about that. The solicitation of funds has been wondrously successful, something in excess of a quarter of a million dollars having been reported yesterday as in hand, and the goal having been advanced by another $50,000 or $100,000. To all this, the Duke Endowment will add one dollar for two.

And yet, proud as we may be of the accomplishment of the Presbyterian campaign, there is room for doubt that the city's hospital problem will have been solved with the materialization of these added facilities. Care of the indigent non-hospitalized sick will still fall largely on a City clinic which is doing the best it can, but can't do much with the equipment and accommodations it has. Dr. Walsh probably will recommend a hospital out-patient department. The medical men of the city will still be unable to concentrate their equipment and their patients at one central hospital, which limitation will inevitably result, as it does now, in diffusion of effort and services. Dr. Walsh probably will recommend a completely departmentalized hospital. Internships and residences will be available, if at all, only at the new Presbyterian and perhaps at the enlarged Mercy. Dr. Walsh probably will lay down the proposition that a hospital sufficiently large and well equipped to secure capable interns and residents is essential to economy of operation and treatment of both hospitalized and non-hospitalized sick.

Wherefore, anticipating a comprehensive report on our hospital situation comprehensively, we say that the Presbyterian campaign has indubitably solved one phase of our acute hospital problem by the provision and donation to the community of greater facilities, but that the problem, of a medical center for Charlotte, itself the medical center for a large resident and outlying population, is still to be tackled.

Text for a Parley

Lord Hitler, who, they say, dreams of making himself the king in name that he is in fact, crosses the Brenner Pass into Italy today to meet Lord Mussolini, who also, they say, dreams of making himself the king in name that he is in fact. And all along the way of Hitler's coming armed men walk the railroad tracks. And in Rome and in Naples and in Florence--and all the towns the two visit in company--the police are busier than they have been in modern times, searching, scouring every corner, for the machine gun, the rifle, the hand that might take the lives of this lovely pair. Jails overflow, tourists are hounded, the Nazi police are called into help ferret out suspects.

All of which sets us in mind of a passage in the first act of a play written not many years ago by the American, Maxwell Anderson--"Mary of Scotland." Lord Boswell has urged the Queen to put down her enemies by force, and hears this answer:

"You mistrust too much--and even if this were true

A sovereign lives always with death before and after.

And many have tried to murder their way to safety--but

There's no safety there. For each enemy

You kill you make ten thousand...

...This is my faith, dear my lord, that all men

Love better good than evil, cling rather to truth

Than falseness, answer fair dealing with fair return;

And this too; those thrones will fall that are built on blood

And craft..."

On the Insurance Front

Two things take our attention in the sixth annual message of the National Committee for Life Insurance Education to the people of the United States, which has arrived in the mails.

One of them is the reminder that life insurance companies own $3,000,000,000 worth of railroad securities. That is one of the principal jokers in the railroad situation. Everybody but the railroads themselves agrees that one of the chief difficulties with them is that they have entirely too much water in their financial structure--and that this water ought to be squeezed out. But when you start squeezing you'll start squeezing the insurance companies which own this $3,000,000,000, maybe to the point of gravely hurting them. And how important it is not to squeeze the insurance companies to the point of hurting them, you may judge from the fact that last year they paid to policyholders and beneficiaries one dollar for every $1.40 paid out by the Federal Government through all relief agencies!

The other thing is that the second week in May will not hereafter be called Life Insurance Week. It was high time somebody started to stop this week business. Long since it has got so that there isn't a single week in the year in which we aren't supposed to take ardent interest, not only in Fire Prevention or Cleaning Up or Better Homes or Better Babies, but also in Kindness to Pet Kangaroos and Foot-and-Mouth Disease and The Control of the Tsetse Fly and Canned Tripe and some 15,000 other matters of the most pressing and vital concern to us.


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