While modern voices find much merriment in decrying systemic racism, declaring the US a consistently racist environment, despite the fact that millions of immigrants have moved here over the last 200 years to pursue (and succeed) in one of the few countries affording them that freedom, no one could argue that America seemed to get it 100% right in this 1938 LIFE article, slamming the Anti-Semitic sentiment which mirrored the growing Nazi party. Very woke indeed.
It’s WWII. An injured soldier
tolerates appreciates the twang of a skilled Red Cross Gray Lady, plucking the strings of an autoharp. Why Gray Lady, you ask? Because she has gray hair? No. Gray Ladies were volunteers who performed non-medical services to sick, injured, or disabled patients. They were not nurses, but they could read to patients, write letters home for them, or in this case, perform talents worthy of an appearance on Star Search. My question is: why isn’t he donning an open-backed hospital gown? Instead, he sports a Chinese stand collar, frog button jacket, as though he is dressed for his shift at The Golden Tiger. I don’t get it.
Have you eaten Joan of Arc brands in your neck of the woods? It must be a geographical item, as I’ve never seen such a thing.
I don’t envy grocers nowadays, trying to keep their stores clean, their employees healthy, and their shelves stocked. But the lean WWII years also challenged grocers with government rationing lists. Here, this grocer attempts to label his stock with an accurate price in points. Can you imagine?
Housewives had to be thrifty, sometimes to the point of excess.
It was important to keep a sense of humor about the whole thing, as it is today.
Yes, I did go grocery shopping today, and yes, the TP and paper towel aisle, which is enormous, was nearly wiped dry.
Fortunately, we got our always overpriced $20 8-pack of Cottonelle last week, and that should last us until Halloween, which I’m pretty sure won’t exist this year, unless you can finagle some sort of contactless curbside amongst kids who were never able to try on costumes in the first place because fitting rooms are closed. And speaking of Halloween candy and chocolate, the pictures above were images of children in Berlin, excited to their cores about the “American chocolate bombers” who dropped candy tied to miniature parachutes as they flew into the city. Can you imagine a selfless world of kindness like that today?
Hair adorned with flower, a hostess at New York’s Stage Door Canteen offers birthday cake to servicemen.
Those of you denied birthday parties may have not even received cake this year. You can’t trust the local bakery to have prepared it covid-free. Perhaps you had to make do with queso de Swiss like Senor Gonzales here.
But from all us at “I Don’t Get It,” here’s wishing you a much better 2021!
Chair carriers support travelers and their goods as they painstakingly make their way up the steep steps from the Kialing River in Chungking, 1941. And they didn’t even have Asics with good arch support. The provisional capital of China, not under Japanese occupation, would suffer from continuous terror bombing by the Japanese air force until 1943.
Below, conscripts of the Chinese Nationalist Army walk through the city on labor detail. Makes social distancing seem like a walk in the park.
Today, what we called Chungking is now Chongqing, but it still looks a bit congested for my taste. You wouldn’t catch me on that tram.
Honestly, before today, I only associated the word with old Chun King ads.
But today, I am sheltered-in-place and more educated than before.
And glad I don’t live on the Yangtze River.
In this image from a February 1941 LIFE, the original Joseph Patrick Kennedy Sr chooses to stay hydrated during a meeting of the House of Representatives. At the time, he was serving as the United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom. During the Battle of Britain in November 1940, a pessimistic Kennedy expressed concern that “Democracy is finished in England,” which annoyed President Roosevelt. Not only would it prove untrue, but it contradicted sentiment by Churchill, who notoriously stated, “Never never never give up.” By the time this picture was published, Kennedy had resigned his position.
H.R. 1776 was also known as the Lend-Lease Act. Per visitthecapitol.gov:
In 1941 Congress passed a bill allowing the president to provide assistance to nations whose defense was considered vital to the security of the United States. Known as the Lend-Lease Act, it became the principal means for providing U.S. aid to key Americans allies, especially Great Britain, during World War II. The act permitted the president to “loan” war materiel such as ammunition, tanks, and airplanes to allies without expectation of repayment. Though the United States would not declare war until December 8, 1941, the Lend-Lease Act effectively ended U.S. neutrality.
Olivia de Havilland enjoys teensy cups of beverages with different branches of WWII servicemen as part of her service in the USO.