WASHINGTON (Feb. 20)
A ten-minute plea against anti-Semitism was made on the floor of the House of Representatives by Rep. Usher L. Burdick, North Dakota Republican.
Pointing out that the Jews constitute “sixty-five one-hundredths of one percent of the population of the earth” and about four percent of the total in the United States, Burdick called it “cowardly for people to take part in a movement to drive this week minority out of its midst and deny them the same protection, the same privileges, and the same opportunities which we who are not Jews enjoy.”
“For some years now,” he said, “and especially in the last four or five years, there has developed in this country a deep-seated prejudice against Jewish people, Many men, occasionally a member of Congress, unable to contain themselves longer, denounce the Jews. Men who entertain anti-Semitic views are just as wrong as they are unjust. I do not say there are no bad men, criminals, or undesirable people of the Jewish race in this country. There are such people among the Jews as there are among all peoples. But as a racial group they deserve the credit of being as good as any other group.”
Burdick denounced those who charge too many Jews are filling government positions. “Every Jew under the Federal Civil Service received the best rating or he would not have been called,” he said, “If the young Jewish people are studious and are earnest and faithful students and master the subjects taught in our schools, what is there in this Government or our way of life to prevent them from advancing themselves solely upon merit.”