Calvin Coolidge Says, March 2, 1931

Date: March 2, 1931

Location: Northampton, MA

(Original document available here)

In that symstematic and organized way which is their national characteristic a considerable body of German writers have made a sympathetic response to the men of letters in France who had appealed to them to promote a better understanding between the two countries.

This action might well be supplemented by all the agencies of the press and extended to the whole world. Of course there is room for argument as to whether criticism of foreign nations produces dislike of them or whether it merely caters to a dislike already existing. Probably both elements are present. Yet if such criticism could be avoided the result certainly would be beneficial.

In our own case the State Department always tries to be fair to foreign countries. If our domestic press attacks the attitude of our government it greatly encourages foreign antagonism to our country. If it attacks the foreign attitude it increases our antagonism to foreign countries. Governments are almost always sincerely attempting to conduct themselves so that their people can maintain friendly intercourse with each other. All nations want good will, security and peaceful commerce. They are rivals mainly in world service. In these efforts they ought to have the support of the public press.

Citation: Calvin Coolidge Says: Dispatches Written by Former-President Coolidge and Syndicated to Newspapers in 1930-1931 (Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation)

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Craig Eyermann who prepared this document for digital publication.

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