On September 27, 1934, President Roosevelt addressed, by way of radio, the Herald Tribune Women's Conference on Current Affairs.
In 1934, as in 2010 the problem is the same - rumor mongers and irresponsible Press. Why is that not surprising?
FDR: ”More and more men and women are looking up their own facts and forming their own opinion. And equally important, we are learning in these days to discriminate between real news and mere rumor. As a people, we put our tongues in our cheeks when a fact, or a series of facts are distorted, no matter what motive is the cause of that distortion. We as a people, throughout the length and breadth of the country, are less and less inclined to believe those who would create fear or encourage panic. We as a people pay small attention to those gossip mongers who invent tales, generally of course, with a selfish objective behind the tales. You and I as sensible Americans, know of daily instances which mar rather than help our common efforts for calm discussion of current problems.
Fear and the people who propagate it are a never ending breed. Of course, the ones inclined to believe distortions are a rapidly growing breed of late.
And that is worrisome.