Document 35: Eleanor Roosevelt's "My Day"

Eleanor Roosevelt, "My Day," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 24 January 1949.

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It seems to me that the main thing we have to face today is the tendency and possibility to call Communistic those things in the nature of a reform or change that certain people do not like. This is certainly in opposition to all our democratic ideals.

From my point of view it is not really a question whether we are opposed to Communism. It is a question whether we are going to call so many ideas Communist that many people will be afraid to express their opinions for fear of having them labeled as such.

In the case of the professors at the University of Washington, the issue seems clear for those who openly say they are Communists. One cannot subscribe to the Communist Party and at the same time be a good citizen of the United States, much less a teacher.

One may believe that democracy needs certain changes and if one's beliefs are disliked by others and labeled Communistic, then we are in danger of doing just what the Communists do.

In other words, we have to watch ourselves so that we do not take a [page] out of the Communist book and suppress all individuals who differ in their opinions from what other people might consider the democratic line.

Center for the Study of the Pacific Northwest