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Educators Call for Fight on Intolerance at Williamstown Institute

Intolerance must be “fought from the cradle to the grave,” by an intensive program from kindergarten through adult education to protect our democratic way of life, declared Alice L. Halligan, before the Institute of Human Relations being held here at Williams College.

Miss Halligan, in charge of placement and adult education in the Springfield, Mass. schools, described the work of a committee of principals, supervisors and teachers appointed two years ago to combat prejudice and intolerance in the community.

“We believe that in the elementary school the backlog of democratic living must be laid. There, or never fully, the child must learn the fundamental concepts of respect for others, fair play, a sense of equality, of being part of the democratic community.”

Another speaker, Dr. David M. Levy, New York psychiatrist, declared “complete insanity may and does result from intolerance in full bloom” today. “It is clear,” he said, that as “intolerance becomes an increasing domain in the personality, it becomes necessarily paranoid. In full bloom it becomes delusional, completely distorting the intellectual function. It becomes insane. There is a long road between so-called ordinary intolerance and the picture of Hitler madness which I have presented. Nevertheless, in any highly intolerant person you will be able to observe most likely the paranoid coloring in the personality.”

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