• U.S.

Letters, Jul. 22, 1940

10 minute read
TIME

For War?

Sirs:

I wondered how long it would be before TIME would smugly report the encouraging increase of pro-war letters.

So at last your policy is showing results! At last your readers, inflicted with slanted news reports, “subtle” editorializing and carefully selected stories, are beginning to react in the approved manner. It must be a great source of personal satisfaction to the editors of TIME to realize that they are using a powerful instrument to prime the people for a “glorious struggle” to “save Democracy” . . . again.

And, of course, just in case we can’t get organized in time to intervene in Europe, TIME is embarking on another track— war with Japan. The idea seems to be, pick your enemy out of a hat, just so long as we don’t get left out of the game. . . .

That’s what you’re asking for, TIME, and asking for it hard.

WHY?

ZENA GRIFFITH PETERSON Seattle, Wash.

Sirs:

YOUR SHADING OF NEWS IN BEHALF OF OUR INTERVENTION IS DISHONEST. THE REFERENCE TO MY OPPOSITION TO RED CROSS RESOLUTION [TIME, July 1] TOLD A HALF TRUTH BECAUSE YOU FAIL TO SAY THAT IT WAS NOT PASSED UNTIL IT WAS AMENDED AS DESIRED. BE TRUTHFUL, THE POLICY OF YOUR MAGAZINE IS FOR OUR ENTRANCE IN WAR.

RUSH D. HOLT Washington, D. C.

> The resolution permitting the U. S. ship McKeesport (with Red Cross supplies for refugees) to proceed through belligerent waters to Bordeaux was amended before passage. The amendment—suggested by Senator Clark of Missouri and written by Senator Pittman—was aimed to prevent other similar ships from running blockades or supplying other than Red Cross materials to belligerents. However, Senator Holt in his speech, made before the amendment was proposed, made no reference to desiring any amendment to the resolution—he objected to it simply on the ground that it might involve the U. S. in war.

TIME does not believe its account was distorted. And to be plain as well as truthful, TIME does not favor U. S. entrance into the war. The only ax it has to grind is that U. S. citizens shall have the facts, welcome or unwelcome, to form intelligent opinions on what the U. S. must do to look after its own interests. Also to be plain, there are some circumstances in which the defense of the primary interests of the U.S. may require going to war. TIME believes it as dangerous to refuse to consider that fact as to engage in warmongering.— ED.

Barbarism

Sirs:

. . . A press dispatch from Sioux Falls, S. Dak. relates the treatment accorded Hans, an innocent little American dachshund dog by some children,* because of the dog being of German descent, or rather because the breed was developed in Germany.

. . . The dachshund was popularized by the American and English people, and regardless of the country of origin of the breed, the treatment of this dog brands the malefactors as unAmerican, unChristian, and a disgrace to the human race. I am a dachshund owner and I might further state that my dog is a better dog than any of us are men. He has never knowingly harmed anyone. I can’t say that about any person. I trust the owners of Hans have sufficient money to see that he receives the care he needs. . . .

If the dog’s sight cannot be restored, it might be possible to restore his faith in human nature. I can’t say that about mine. . . .

ALFRED J. DEHEN Springfield, Ill.

> From the torture of unfortunate animals to the torture of unfortunate minorities is only one step down the pathway of hysteria and cruelty. Good citizens should show their children that such barbarism ill befits democracy.—ED.

Thee for Thou

Sirs:

TIME’S English, though often highly informal, is usually pretty good. I must confess, however, that the headline “Neighbor, How Art Thee?” on p. 12 of the current issue [TIME, July 1] almost paralyzes me.

May I suggest that if you are trying to use the old-fashioned form of address found in the King James Bible and surviving to some extent in poetry and prayer, the proper form is “How Art Thou?” But if it is the Quaker usage you are striving after, the form is “How Is Thee?”, though I do not know whether the Quakers actually use this phrase.

C. A. LLOYD Dean Biltmore College Asheville, N. C.

> Thee, Dean Lloyd, is right.—ED.

Wendell Willkie

Sirs:

It seems to me that TIME is unconsciously responsible for the terrific Willkie boom that swept the Republican Convention. Your article of July 31, 1939 so impressed me that I never forgot it. . . .

FREDERICK W. ROLF Rock Island, Ill.

Sirs:

Congratulations . . . on bringing out and nominating not only a Progressive, energetic businessman but the only Republican who can stop Third Term Roosevelt and eventual dictatorship. . . .

H. F. McGlNLEY Kingman, Ariz.

> Only three weeks ago ( TIME, July 1), several readers credited TIME with promoting Franklin Roosevelt for President.—ED.

Sirs:

. . . A man who is considered for the highest office in the land, before his nomination, speaks of himself as one who will be nominated “damn quick.” Now, won’t Christians all over the country relish him ? Pity it is that people who sincerely desire clean government cannot have someone to vote for who can use clean words in expressing himself. And this is Willkie.

A. B. CANNADY Crescent City, Fla.

Sirs:

The nomination of Wendell Willkie is unique in several respects. Each part of his name has seven letters. His initials are the same as our recent wartime President, Woodrow Wilson. Will history repeat?

CLARENCE M. PRUITT Stillwater, Okla.

Sirs:

For the Hall of Fame we nominate the Republican Delegates from Michigan, and are a little chagrined that our own Delegates continue to put politics above patriotism.

FRANK DRAGON

VERNON G. BRUCE

PERRY A. HUNTER

HARVEY R. BRENNAN

HARRY B. SNYDER

FREEMAN G. GRANT

SAMUEL M. KENNEDY

HERBERT V. B. GALLAGER

HORACE J. CLEAVER

M. F. SILVEY

ROBERT T. DETWILER

WILLIAM P. COSGROVE

Philadelphia, Pa.

Sirs:

Assuming that Wendell Willkie is nominated and elected President of this country, would he not be the first businessman to be chosen as President? . . .

My research would indicate that all men who have been elected have been lawyer-politicians or soldiers.

ARTHUR C. BURNETT Houston, Tex.

> Herbert Hoover, as a successful mining engineer and promoter, was a businessman. But for 15 years before his election he had been in public life.—ED.

Claim Disavowed

Sirs:

With reference to your account of the suit by F. A. Seiberling against Ohio Goodyear Securities Corp. (TIME, July 1), I would like to point out that Mr. Edgar B. Davis did not, as you state, borrow $57,000 from Mr. Seiberling to tide him over until his North & South Development Co. struck oil, and the attorney for Mr. Seiberling in the present litigation has disavowed any such claim. . . .

AMOS BURT THOMPSON Cleveland, Ohio

Bolivian Air Base

Sirs:

Regarding the letter from Martin Keaveny on p. 6 of TIME, July 1, and the editorial note appended thereto, it may interest you to hear that my wife and I landed at Trinidad, Bolivia on July 15, 1939 in an amphibian plane of the Lloyd Boliviano air line. . . .

After lunch we resumed our flight to Cochabamba in a Junkers tri-motor land plane. . . . The pilots and crews of the planes in which we flew were all Bolivians, and they all spoke German but not English.

IVAR BRYCE New York City

War Sentiment

Sirs:

. . . For some 20-odd years my generation (the cannon-fodder of 1940-41) has had preached to it day and night the brutality, the folly, the utter stupidity of war. Also presented to us—in cold, unvarnished logic—was what we got out of the last war: not the preservation of democracy in the world as we so naively hoped, but thousands of maimed bodies and saddened homes, billions in unpaid war debts. . . .

Now in six short weeks . . . we are asked to throw aside everything that for 20 years we believed was true and just and sound concerning war. . . .

If Germany defeats England and attempts to invade the Americas—God forbid—and if we have no other remaining consolation worth having, at least we will know what we are fighting for. We will also know we are not attempting to preserve a mistaken ideal, and above all, we may be spared the ignominy of making the same mistake twice.

LOREN ZANE GREY* Zane Grey Inc. Altadena, Calif.

Sirs:

In your June 24 issue you published only one sentence from a letter that I wrote to you.

The obvious inference to your readers was that I favor America’s complete entrance into the war. . . .

STANLEY P. HARBISON Schenectady, N. Y.

> The one sentence TIME quoted was 90 words but some misimpression may have been given. In addition to asking whether the young men of the U.S. could hold their heads erect if they lived in peace while Britons and Frenchmen were fighting, Mr. Harbison also declared emphatically that he did not want the war to continue.—ED.

Sirs:

Since the epidemic has not been checked as previously reported, why not isolate the Isolationists (they have wards for people like that)—instead of sending them to college, as witness the three signers of a letter from Ohio State University in TIME, June 24. . . .

I did not go to college but I am at least in that age group and would like to lift a shout that makes up in quality what it lacks in quantity. It is:

Give us a Navy second to none; be ready to sacrifice “for the good of the ship”; give me the right to look any man in the eye and to tell him to go to hell.

Those phrases originated with my father, the late Admiral Moffett. He, incidentally, asked Congress (really) for the same appropriations for planes that the President asked last month. Only that was about ten years ago. . . .

BEVERLY MOFFETT MOHAN Washington, D. C.

Sirs:

. . . I beseech the President and Congress of this proud and mighty nation to first train me well, and arm me well before ordering me to do battle. I wish to know beforehand where I must go, which gun I must pick up and in which direction I must shoot it. I wish to be trained in the offensive use of my weapon because surely in its offensive use will lie our best defense, but whether in offense or defense I want my efforts to be formidable and without proper training they aren’t likely to be.

In that light I disagree with those in public life who denounce compulsory military training and I might add that in its advocation I fail to see evidence of full intellectual retreat. As a young man who will have to fight, I want it.

A. L. SNEED Charlottesville, Va.

*Hans was kicked, covered with paint, possibly blinded.— ED.

*Son of Novelist Zane Grey.—ED.

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