Good History Lesson
Being a 'baby boomer' whose parents were born during the Great Depression, I was taken back in time when I read Locke Bowman's commentary on Franklin D. Roosevelt, "the man who saved America" (Feb. 4).
I studied American history, learned the presidents, dug deeper in college, but with age we soon forget those important facts of history. Mr. Bowman's recounting of memories from his childhood during that era reminded me of what my own parents probably encountered.
Originally from the deep South, my mother was next to the youngest of 11 children. Her parents were tenant farmers, and for extra income (or a way to keep track of all those kids), her father drove a school bus. Yet, I have never heard her nor any of my aunts and uncles, talk much about the depression.
Can you imagine today listening to an opening line from a president, "My friends, ..." during a 'fireside chat'?
Mr. Bowman also shared FDR's Four Freedoms: freedom of speech and expression; freedom of worship; freedom from want; and freedom from fear. But what struck me the most was the inscription found within the Washington memorial to President Roosevelt. It is near the statuary depicting men waiting in line just to get bread for their families:
"The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." Isn't this just the opposite of what is happening in America? Just imagine, just once, how truly great these United States could be if we lived by those words!
Thank you for the history lesson. Perhaps the next book I read will be about our great president, Franklin D. Roosevelt.
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