I Dare Say – Parrygraphs (4-1-41)

The Pittsburgh Press (April 1, 1941)


Parry graphs
By Florence Fisher Parry

Disturbing item, that which came over the air Sunday night from two purported promotion men of the New Deal, to the effect that all but two of our Cabinet members were away from Washington, “sojourning” in search of that “change of scene and air” which was the favorite prescription in the palmy days but which we have been led to think has no place in these sacrificial days.

But then there used to be a saw which applied to one and all, which went:

What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.


After listening for a painful brace of moments to a radio program dispensing judgment upon the private lives of several pitifully dislocated human beings, I could read with added relish an account of the effort of an alarmed group, calling itself The New York State Conference on Marriage and Family, to form a committee of men and women who are recognized experts in the field of marriage, to supervise such programs.

The words of Dr. Sidney Goldstein, chairman of the group, must find an echo in the hearts of many a long-suffering radio listener:

Some of these programs violate every principle of education for marriage and family counseling…. The problems of marriage are too complicated and too tragic to be discussed by amateurs or men and women who, because of lack of training or inability to understand the implications of marriage and family life, deceive the radio public. The broadcasting companies would not, we are convinced, permit poorly trained and inexpert physicians and lawyers to discuss medical and legal problems over the radio. They should be as conscientious and considerate in matters of marriage and family life.

Another progressive doctor, Dr. S. Feldman, is flouting Shakespeare by announcing in the American Journal of Psychology, that Shakespeare’s Seven Ages of Man are not enough and that now we require 11. Shakespeare’s, as every schoolboy knows, were the infant, schoolboy, lover, soldier, justice, “lean and slippered pantaloon” and “sans everything.”

Of course, Dr. Feldman’s substitutes for the two last periods sound a bit more hopeful; he calls them “retirement” and “fade-out.” Be that as it may, old age is a dreary prospect, and one which still baffles and defies the greatest wizards of science.


The Greeks, and now the Yugoslavs! They make us say again the grand old lines of Emerson:

….where once the embattled farmers stood, and fired the shot heard round the world.

Concord, Warsaw, Helsinki, Athens, Belgrade. The list grows….


The food ration in unoccupied France gives one a sinking at the pit of the stomach. Makes one pray a little, too. Makes us remember the words we used to say when we knelt down:

We give Thee thanks for food and friends,
And all the good Thy mercy sends.
Bless all the poor and sick and sad
And make the happy still more glad.

What shall we do about this, God? Let no one be so ashamed of his soul that he deny the need of just such a simple kind of prayer in a dilemma such as this!


Thi is the Frenchman’s food ration: Think of it and look at your growing boy, 15; your baby, your grandmother – for to these, food is the essence of life, the first consideration. This, in France, would be his portion:

Bread, seven ounces a day, instead of the two pounds the Frenchman is used to. (Bread and wine are the two main items of the Frenchman’s diet). Fats and butter, 15 ounces a MONTH. A half an ounce a day. Cheese, seven and three-quarters ounces a MONTH.

Ten million men, women and children in unoccupied France face starvation, the kind that will become really acute, and in JUNE, a month away. To feed them, Germany would have to deplete her own store. To let them starve, another flame of civilization would go out, leaving the world darker for all time.

What to do? What to do?


The Gallup poll reflects the most spirited sentiment which the American people have SHARED for some time. The majority of those questioned blame retarded defense to STRIKES; 51% (against 31%) believe that business and industrial leaders are doing all they can; 56% (against 10%) think industrial leaders are giving more help than labor leaders; 85% (against 7%) think the law should step in to prevent strikes; 58% (against 29%) think that Henry Ford is right in his attitude against labor unions; 72% (against 14%) think Pegler is right in claiming that many labor union leaders are racketeers.

It is beginning to look as though labor is making its own rope to hang itself. For in the long run, public opinion rules the world.


Remember the time that Haile Selassie warned, prophetically:

It is my duty to inform the governments of the deadly peril which threatened them…. International morality is at stake.

He was speaking of the Italian aggression against little Ethiopia. I don’t like to remember what we, the Anglo-Saxons, did about it then….