NEW YORK (Dec. 28)
Senator Herbert H. Lehman tonight assailed the McCarran immigration law as an “act that bristles with hostility against the alien and foreign-born.” He emphasized that its underlying assumption is that “every alien is a potential saboteur and criminal, and every potential immigrant must remain so is a potential saboteur and criminal, and every potential immigrant must remain so branded unless and until he can prove otherwise. The period of does not end with his admission to the United States, nor even with the time he becomes a citizen by naturalization. If he is foreign-born, the McCarran Act regards him as suspect until he dies.”
Sen. Lehman spoke to an audience of 800 persons at the 57th Annual Gold Medal award Dinner of the Jewish War Veterans of the United states of America in the Waldorf Dinner of the Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America in the Waldorf Astoria. The veterans awarded him their Gold Medal of Merit for 1952 for “exceptional contributions to the Welfare and security of the United States and the advisement of mankind’s struggle for freedom and dignity.”
The award was presented on behalf of the veterans group by Nelson A. Rockefeller. The Senator was cited for his record as Governor of New York, director general of U. N. R. R. A. and United States Senator from New York. Jesse Moss, national commander of the Jewish War Veterans, pressed Sen. Lehman for “his ceaseless efforts to advance the frontiers of human freedom.” Mr. Moss joined in the attack on the McCarran Act.
Calling for the repeal of the McCarran Act in favor of “a reasonable and enlightened immigration law,” Sen. Lehman pointed out that “the McCarran Act sets forth a triple standard of justice–one standard for native–born American citizens, and still another–and the most arbitrary and high-handed of all–for aliens and immigrants.”