Organized Anti-Semitism in America: The Rise of Group Prejudice during the Decade 1930-40

By Donald S. Strong | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XV
Conclusions

CERTAIN conclusions dealing with leadership, membership, and funds of the anti-semitic movement can now be ventured.


LEADERSHIP

The leaders of the eleven groups examined most closely are for the most part middle-aged or old men. The exact ages of eight leaders are available: Gerald Winrod 43, Father Coughlin 50, William Pelley 56, James True 60, Edward Hunter 66, Robert Edmondson 69, Colonel Hadley 69, and Colonel San1ctuary 71.1 As for G. Wilhelm Kunze, Harry Jung and Royal Scot Gulden, the first appears to be even younger than Winrod and the other two are certainly not less than fifty. Only three of the eleven leaders have a college education -- Hadley, Sanctuary, and Coughlin. Seven possess one skill or more naturally fitting them for leadership of their organizations. True and Edmondson were formerly journalists; Pelley, a writer of novels, short stories, and scenarios; and Winrod, a writer of religious tracts. Jung and Hunter, through their experience in labor espionage, developed skill in secretly gathering information. Coughlin and Winrod became orators through preaching.

Only Hadley and Sanctuary are independently wealthy. Coughlin and Edmondson have sources of income apart from the finances of their organizations. Seven leaders depend upon their organizations for their bread and butter. Gulden is the only one about whom there is some uncertainty. He does not appear to have been wealthy, and yet his small organization could hardly yield much of a salary. Somewhat significant are Pelley's and Edmondson's assertions that they were $50,000-a-year men at one time. Whether or not their assertions are accurate or even true, both have certainly suffered serious deprivations in recent years. The sharp reduction of their incomes has doubtlessly been an important factor in the shaping of their prejudices.

The fact that seven leaders have made their living from their organizations brings up the question of sincerity. General jealousy among leaders, unwillingness to fuse their organizations into one that might be effective, Hunter's and Pelley's competing efforts to solicit money

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