March 20, 1944
Portraits of Patriots
Jerome Hartman: 44-year-old lieutenant commander U.S.N… Hails from Dayton, Ohio … When World War I was over, he became a resident M.D. at the veterans’ hospital in Ohio. For five years, he devoted himself to the care of our wounded soldiers … When World War II came along, he enlisted in the Navy and was assigned, as an observer, to the British flat-top Illustrious.” … The carrier sailed into the Mediterranean, where in battle it was bombed unmercifully. There was no obligation on the part of Cmdr. Hartman to risk his safety. But, without asking questions, he changed his battle station to top deck where, oblivious of bombs, he treated every sailor he found wounded … For this extraordinary “heroism in tending wounded men” this American was decorated by the British government.
John Rankin: Congressman from Miss., appeaser, Negro-and-alien baiter, obstructionist, anti-Semite and darling of native Fascists … In June ’41 he outraged Congress with a vicious attack on minorities. On representative, deeply shocked, answered him, walked out into the lobby, collapsed and died … This Rankin dared to tell Congress that “slavery was the greatest blessing the Negro ever had” … In April ’43 he declared on the House floor that the plan to “Beat Hitler First” was suicidal … He admitted hiding some of his expenses by keeping his wife on the congressional payroll for $3,250 a year as his private secretary, though she did not work in his office.