Friday, June 27, 2008

Where's White?

Where in America today would you seek another William Allen White?

He came to mind while I was writing about Roosevelt edging America toward war on the side of Britain during 1940. White, a loyal Republican small-town newspaper editor, loathed Roosevelt.* But he did what he thought was right.

The last quarter century of White's life was spent as an unofficial national spokesman for middle America. This led President Franklin Roosevelt to ask White to help generate public support for the Allies before America's entrance into World War II. White was fundamental in the formation of the Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, sometimes known as the White Committee.

* From an editorial published in 1943, shortly after Roosevelt returned from the Casablanca Conference: "We who hate your gaudy guts salute you."