Selected Papers of Homer Cummings, Attorney General of the United States, 1933-1939

By Homer S. Cummings; Carl Brent Swisher | Go to book overview

APPENDIX
Politics and Humanity

[Most public officers in policy-making positions are under pressure to deliver addresses on many subjects before many types of organizations. Attorney General Cummings spoke before bar associations, law schools, meetings of various types of organizations, colleges, religious convocations, encampments of Boy Scouts, and clubs, as well as at political assemblies and banquets and over the radio. However light the demands of the occasion, he used his speeches as vehicles for ideas in such a way as to make them of much more than temporary significance. Ed.]


Education, science, and government; from an address at Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida, February 26, 1934:

IT IS the nature of man to break down frontiers. As the scouts of our early days passed with the conquest of prairie and mountain, there arose * * * the scouts of science, clearing the path for their fellows through the frontier of knowledge. Great institutions of higher learning developed, first in the classics, then in pure science, finally in applied science and the various arts. Physics, chemistry, biology, economics, sociology, and, indeed, all the physical and social sciences were developed and applied to the myriad uses of man. As the Thirteenth Century was essentially an age of religion, so our age is largely one of science--of scientific accomplishment and of scientific method, of collection and classification of data, of formation and testing of hypotheses, of reaching conclusions and building thereon, of checking one discovery against another so that, ultimately, isolated findings become a part of the pattern of all. * * *

And yet, a short twelve months ago, our transportation facilities were largely idle; our abundant crops were rotting in the warehouses; our factories were closed or running upon pitifully

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