“We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.”-Dr. John Hope Franklin
I’m thinking about my son living in the heat of Southeastern India with his girlfriend, their adopted dog and adopted cat. They decided to teach in India since it would give them the opportunity to learn about people, different cultures and travel; something that would be quite difficult to do if they had children and the responsibility of a mortgage. They are right. Today, the lovely and gentle historian, John Hope Franklin was born in 1915 in Oklahoma. I remember seeing him quite a few times on PBS. Not only was he an historian, writer, educator, I remember listening to him talk about his love for and cultivation of African violets.
Dr. Hope’s love of the flower, his love of learning, his love of traveling all stemmed from his teacher/librarian-mom and lawyer-dad who took the family with him summers when he taught summer schools all over and from those campus bases, the family would continue to travel. Both of his parents cultivated plants in NYC on their window sills, gardenias and African violets.
“As a distinguished scholar, he has used his authority and expertise to foster political and social change. And as a teacher, he has inspired his many students and colleagues to delve deeper into the causes and remedies of inequality, bigotry, and oppression.”–jhfc, duke university
Dr. Franklin lived a long life and assisted many of the well-known figures of the 20th Century as they worked hard for equality and Civil Rights: Thurgood Marshall, Dr. King, Dr. W.E.B. DuBois and many others. His books taught many of us real history.
I know my son would agree with Dr. Hope’s assessment of travel and plans to use the “glories of” his “journey” wherever he goes and whatever he does in life. Safe travels, my son!
“I have here in my hand a list of two hundred and five [people] that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping the policy of the State Department.”
–Joseph Raymond McCarthy, speech, Wheeling, West Virginia, Febuary 9, 1950
Novelist, screenwriter and brave individual, Dalton Trumbo was born today in 1905. I remember reading his “Johnny Got His Gun” as a young teen and the profound impact it had on me as I read the thoughts of a soldier whose whole body was blown up and only his mind remained. It was a powerful book.
“Then there was this freedom the little guys were always getting killed for. Was it freedom from another country? Freedom from work or disease or death? Freedom from your mother-in-law? Please mister give us a bill of sale on this freedom before we go out and get killed. Give us a bill of sale drawn up plainly in advance what we’re getting killed for… so we can be sure after we’ve won your war that we’ve got the same kind of freedom we bargained for.”-Dalton Trumbo, “Johnny Got His Gun”
And to think, that the writer of the above text was considered a threat to our country?
“Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Communist party?’
In the 1950s, thousands of Americans who toiled in the government, served in the army, worked in the movie industry, or came from various walks of life had to answer that question before a congressional panel.”–ushistory.org
Dalton Trumbo was one of The Hollywood Ten, those individuals who were blacklisted because they wouldn’t name names at Senator Joseph McCarthy’s witch hunts, the HUAC hearings in the late 40s and early 50s. Trumbo was the screenwriter behind “Spartacus,” “Roman Holiday” and other big movies. Lives were forever ruined by McCarthyism. I am so happy a movie is being made about Dalton Trumbo and what he went through. It will star Bryan Cranston of “Breaking Bad” fame and will be simply and aptly titled, Trumbo. We can never take our liberties and freedoms for granted.
“No man can terrorize a whole nation unless we are all his accomplices.” -Edward R. Murrow, On Senator Joseph McCarthy, See It Now, March 7, 1954