Skip to main content

We will keep fighting for all libraries - stand with us!

tv   Book TV  CSPAN  July 19, 2015 1:00pm-3:01pm EDT

1:00 pm
it. and she was told is not just your book. for two years i have been helping you. my finger prints all over it. she went out and picked up up the manuscript. >> host: one time at a book festival someone asked why do you write this book and he said to finish the book because by the time you get to the end of you are sick of it. she hit that wall.
1:01 pm
in terms of her powers and making an observation he couldn't have chosen a better friend of the 20th century. maybe one of the 20th now. big sur conversation. this has been terrific. i am looking forward to the boat. i'm looking forward to going back and look unite viewers to see if the real-life ties between her life.
1:02 pm
>> guest: good thank you so much. >> host: and booktv will want to introduce you to northwestern professor john marquez come assistant professor of african-american studies and the author of this vote, "black-brown solidarity: racial politics in the new gulf south." professor marquez before we get started on the specifics, what
1:03 pm
is your goal? what are you to accomplish? >> guest: i think there were a series of holes that i try to accomplish. the book begins -- my interest in the book begins around 2002. there is an incident of police brutality in my hometown, which is a blue-collar suburb in the houston metropolitan area. the 45-year-old mexican immigrant was beaten and choked to death by four white police officers. it was caught on videotape. the grand jury was convened to decide whether or not charges to be pressed against the officers. the videotape revealed it was a clear act of police aggression. the medical examiner's report released by them medical county examiner's office ruled it a
1:04 pm
homicide. repeated blunt impact trauma. as a result of the ruling and an activist awakening transpired in my home community. i consider that a weakening for a variety of reasons rather than my hometown. it was the first monumental that people of color african american and latino people organize themselves against the judicial system and against police. secondly, it involved a coalition of african-americans and latinos working together spearheaded largely by african-american leadership. i found for affirmative reason they all covered our conversation as well. the third thing i found interesting about it was the strong world women played in
1:05 pm
establishing coalitions in maintaining the community when in fact the condition they were organizing against disproportionately affected by segments of color, specifically black and brown boys and men. i found that to be an interesting and unique opportunity. >> host: who is luis alfonso torres? >> guest: luis alfonso torres was the victim, the 45-year-old immigrant from mexico that lost his life and became a celeb in the community for residents to organize for the first time in their history in a protest against what they felt was systemic injustice. it is a blue collar suburb around the world refining industry. made home to the exxonmobil refinery which was throughout its history the largest refinery of its kind in the world.
1:06 pm
it has a complex history industrial boomtown history behind it as well. african-americans and latinos have grown in the number that community over the years in relationship to the expanding oil industry and so there is a global local dimension to the community as well as u.s. interest in access to oil reserves across the world have grown since world war ii, so fus refineries grown as a way to process oil. so some of these corporations have moved more towards seasonal contract. african-americans, latinos and other minority groups have moved into his doom their jobs and their largely responsible for the booming population up until this day. >> host: has there been tension between african-americans and latinos in the past? >> guest: yes absolutely.
1:07 pm
americans and latinos in every space where they coexist across the nation one of things i want to capture in the book was solidarity between groups and with regard to political solidarity is much more of her than it is a noun. it is not something that one accomplishes. it is not a milestone or condition one reaches. it is something practice in our everyday experiences within just a sense of into social relations our communities. as there is not a comprehensive monolithic solidarity within the black or brown population, across those two populations either. one of the things i want to point out in the book however was to shut the lead in the dynamism and complexity to which those two groups relate to one another and the reasons why they're able to come together. one of the things that was
1:08 pm
bothered by a social movement historian. who kind of lucked into archives of social organizations, activist organizations and political organizations and are able to pinpoint where the groups do not get along and were they fail to act in solidarity with one another. everything they say is true. there has been tension between the two groups. having come from one of the command is from a working-class background and understanding the dynamic nature through which we understand and respond to it i knew there was a much more complicated story to be told. the graphic data, oral histories i began to literally read the writing on the wall. graffiti art, murals, and see what the history is in subject to the days of african-americans and latinos came together.
1:09 pm
the activist struggle which is one against lung on trade in many instances that he and his gang culture an expressive medium such as ipod music from the south to design and visual mediums i mentioned as well. in an interdisciplinary way of map out the terrain there is a different kind of attention with regard to what constitutes the black round solidarity. >> host: in this case what was the commonality that brought these two groups together generally and how did it manifest itself? >> guest: experiences with peers and awareness of state sanctioned racial violence. one of the things i tried to do in the book was to validate the struggle that emerged in 2002 at a time when it is being vilified by creating a decision rather than raising an awareness about a commission is far more
1:10 pm
pervasive. what i do is trace back to a much more extensive history of disciplinary colonial racial violence deriving from when the community began to take shape. african american history in the structuring of the entire houston area. and as they have to have been subjected to the same social order ignorance of the old south and once targeted african-americans exclusively. .targets african-americans and latinos so i traced the history of lynching to the advent of police brutality as a way to map out a barbaric continuum of violence of those two groups in particular. >> back to the case. what did these two groups do to
1:11 pm
combat what they saw as injustice? >> it's more of a question of what they have been doing. one of the things they do in the book is validate the much more extensive history that is often unseen and undetectable. she got into was quite pivotal. african-americans saw as an opportunity to raise awareness about a condition they been suffering from for quite some time. smothers sporadic acts of resistance in the past but the fact he is part of a mexican immigrant to galvanize there at that moment a protest was quite telling in terms of history but also the complexity these populations attain. a coalition was formed and african-american latino leaders
1:12 pm
in the community, my whole family involved with it. i felt sympathetic to the cause as well because my scholarly evolution began an activist oriented realm against conditions like police brutality. it was something i felt compelled to write about. besides the awakening the commodities have pop culture and see similar critiques mit's emerging shedding a critical life on these issues of violence and understanding and resistance against it. >> host: and yearbook "black-brown solidarity" you describe yourself as marginally chacon. what does that mean and why is it important? >> guest: this is one of the many ways they try to honor the
1:13 pm
significance of african american history within that community. houston has one of the largest latino populations in the country now and yet the latino population didn't begin to grow until after the 1970s. for different from other cities who have a millennial population as well. having been born and raised in the region african-american history in spite of important for the understanding race and colonialism and the frameworks through which i learned how to critique. black nationalist and was the language i began my career as an activist as well. that particularly in relevance to the south is vitally influential in terms of how i understand my place in the world. when i moved out of houston to go to college i begin to
1:14 pm
understand there is an equally complex history and tradition amongst mexican-americans deriving from the chicano movement. i learned much through school through courses have a tape for my understanding of blackness and black power and politics survive from my variances from what i was five years old i could remember thinking about these things. that is something that came later in my life in terms of understanding the way that connects to the experience i have growing up in the old south. >> is there a real split in the houston area between whites, african-americans from latin america? >> the splits between and among all of those groups. class dynamics are important to pay attention to as well. middle-class african-americans and latinos try to distance themselves from working-class blacks and latinos as we see
1:15 pm
across the united states. i see solidarity between working-class life and latinos and african-americans in parts of the city as well. and then i see this old guy dedication to confederacy does the wake of the old south and social climate of straw outline between whites and what i see is the nexus of the conglomeration of black and brown. you see that play out in a variety of ways. yesterday we saw footage. subways have been fortunate the book i published is quite pathetic and useful as a tool to understand things that have happened in ferguson missouri or things that happen in other places in baltimore as all in baltimore i fell asleep of reaching the threshold of frustration. against the division between black, brown and white and
1:16 pm
engaging in protest. it is quite telling to the fact that these protests are often created a problem coming at a time that is considered the post-civil rights era through which we are often indoctrinated to think these are problems of the past and they move beyond and reform our society and the people protesting are rational or emotional volatile people appeared as a scholar is one of my missions to validate experience of my people know not only are those assessments of social protest in understanding in our world because they have to survive conditions on a day-to-day basis. >> you mentioned a couple times your awareness of scholarly aptitude developed early. was there a galvanizing moment in your history?
1:17 pm
>> you know, i think there was a series of them and a lot of black and brown working-class communities. our entire history is galvanizing moments. one of the problems repetition of the moments i brutality in my brutality and my sister number cells did not as a way to survive them and what you see such is what happened in ferguson in baltimore what we will continue to see in cities across the united states dispute reaching threshold for paddington on themselves to a day-to-day reality of exposure to these conditions. there's not any one particular case i think i can draw back on. there are some personal stories i shot in the involving family members. in particular my father was some of these conditions with
1:18 pm
law-enforcement racial profiling in particular. is quite emblematic in the torres case in 2002. i try to lay out the genealogy of these types of clark as mac or transformative moments as a way to offer a tool for people to read and understand that it is okay to express ourselves against these types of things. if we numb ourselves that is one thing we need to do to survive but if we don't advocate resistance and we begin to participate. >> host: you read about the fact women played a relatively outsized role in the coalition of solidarity. >> guest: i find it important for one because i'm in a particular and african-american women and chacon is are often
1:19 pm
not getting a social movement literature with regard to their vital role in something we account for more scholars with latino studies are african american studies of late. i wanted to participate by shedding a critical light on the import will african-american women and latinos many i've known all my life and the roles they played and the courage and sacrifice they made as well and give them credit for that and make their to struggles across the united states and beyond the united states where you see women in import roles but the struggle of the missing 43 in mexico. you see mothers and women played an important role there another protest against police brutality and the women of color
1:20 pm
organizing and spearheading initiatives. none of color often speak about these things and perhaps part of the dynamic as well today. women do the important role of organizing and sustaining communities than they deserve all the credit. >> host: professor marquez what is your path to northwestern university? >> guest: and in the african american studies now and the latino latino studies program. my pastor. my pass a given activism. i became interested in colleges and universities and coursework and scholarly dialogue as a way to become a better of it and have better tools to organize against condition is not only in houston and other cities across the united states. here in chicago have been involved in anti-violent struggles and tried to place out in the proper context.
1:21 pm
in my role at northwestern i try to merge the worlds together specifically for a student interns have been able to understand there is a vast disconnect between university and community that are vitally important for making linkages and maintaining bridges. in a nutshell that is how i got to where i yam. >> host: what is the importance of ethnic studies programs like latino studies african-american studies. why are they necessary? >> guest: they are necessary because they offer a different critique than what you can see happening in traditional disciplinary methods. for example my critique of social movement comes from a black studies. if we map out and theorize was political solidarity, we can't go looking and archives to find the information.
1:22 pm
we have to look at expressive cultures and blend all of the data and factual matters together to have a complex reading of black indigenous flies because what we do scholars is invoke a relationship that we go and study and analyze them and publish the scholarly reports that are almost a set of instructions of how to combat depression. black studies emerged as a result of black protests in our community that they need to a more solid bridge between those two spaces so they cannot be denigrated and we can understand the complex and dynamism and not give them instructions in terms of what they need to do with their lives. that's one of the many important roles they play at universities.
1:23 pm
>> host: we been tied with northwestern professor john marquez. "black-brown solidarity: racial politics in the new gulf south" is the book. thanks for being on booktv. >> guest: thank you for having me. postcode now from last month rose about reading festival in hyde park, new york christopher o'sullivan discusses his vote "harry hopkins: fdr's envoy to churchill and stalin." >> it is my honor to introduce my good friend, christopher o'sullivan. he is connected research for more than two decades and is the author of several books about the roosevelt era including the forthcoming as well as his most
1:24 pm
recent harry hopkins fdr signed way church hill and stalin fdr at the end of the empire which won the american historical association gutenberg prize. he teaches history at the history at the university's campus the university santa cisco has lectured in europe china and the middle east and delivered fdr and his vision at the un's 60th anniversary and is also married to the amazing they o'sullivan has a great friend of the library as well. ladies and gentlemen, chris o'sullivan. [applause] >> thank you, bob. what a pleasure to be back. thank you for being here this morning. it is a great tradition this rating possible. i try to coordinate my visits to the library with the reading festival whether in speaking or not because it is an enjoyable time. i want to thank bob and the staff at the franklin roosevelt presidential library.
1:25 pm
it's been a great two decades and my motto is looking forward to the next two. for creating a wonderful environment, a great place to work, when i was casting about for a topic for my doctoral dissertation i visited other presidential libraries which existed at that time in the 90s and it was no contest. i have to do something. wish i had a more inspirational story about where i chose but had a lot to do with this facility of the people that work here and the wonderful head and valley environment of national park and everything else. also for helping to organize the event and i would like to start off by thanking the authors who came before me. if you write about harry caulkins come you try to climb on the shoulders of a lot of great writers. first of all it is very intimidating to write a book 60
1:26 pm
years after robert sherwood's classic. rather shared is one of the great writers of the 21st century. he was ultimately for pulitzer prizes, three for drama. he also won an academy award for his screen play for the best years of our lives by william wyler. this is quite a talent. you start off wondering what to share with leaf out of 1200 page book? you do have to remember he was writing right after the war and many people he was writing about were still alive. sure would serve as those people. very sensitive to not offending people. my wife and i did research at harvard university were sure was papers are and one thing we found that was remarkable were hundreds and hundreds of transcripts of interviews did the figures of the roosevelt
1:27 pm
administration after the war. it is interesting how much he left out. he left a lot out deliberately because he was concerned about people's careers, people still functioning and active at that time. he didn't want to be too critical of people he liked so we were able to find out that you're less well. one thing i wanted to look at was very specifically what was said about harry hopkins, not only his service during the 1930s, but this unique role he played during the second world war as roosevelt's envoy. a new study with an anecdote that gives you a sense of how strange the relationship wise. round about march 1941, shortly after hawkins had returned from his first visit to winston churchill right after roosevelt had won a controversial third term and fdr were thinking we
1:28 pm
need to do some more and this is the german nation, beginning at the idea. so hawkins went to britain, spend some time at church show and came back and the women of the press corps were gathering for a bay area come from a press conference. suddenly darting past the open door to see a shadowy figure in a garish housecoat and they realize it's very hot and spirit they have the possibility of a scoop as to when harry hopkins is doing in them. he had been very moment the press about what his mission can't do today. they began chasing them down. he was merely looking for a cigarette but he lived in such close proximity to both roosevelt and he didn't know that at that until a couple years into the war. there was a remarkable intimacy.
1:29 pm
roosevelt's chief speechwriter that are said there are many close advisers when he lived with someone when you can call upon them at any time and drop it in your dressing gown. as a kind of intimacy and influence that isn't necessarily achieved by other people. fdr died suddenly at april 194570 years ago and he left no memoir. hopkins followed him to the grave about eight months later in january 1946. the material hopkins was collecting to write his memoir his widow gave to robert sherwood to get them started on this book. neither roosevelt nor hopkins left a number. there's a gaping hole when you consider churchill about a voluminous memoir that this
1:30 pm
gave churchill a huge leg up. he said i will determine the history because i will write it myself. another thing i thought to do was to try to fill in the blanks left by roosevelt's dad in april and hopkins that the following january. i wanted to understand why they did things they did. i always. i always feel a great. i was really great to the mythology around world war ii and part of it has to do with emerging culture after the war, film industry and it goes on even to this day. many americans are not aware the important strategic front of the war with the eastern front for the red army was fighting hitler's army. this is where the vast majority of german casualties were suffered. i know roosevelt and hopkins have come in with their close
1:31 pm
relations during the war but people who criticize that are at pains to explain how the war would have been one without the bad army, without suffering hundreds of thousands more casualties, or not winning the war at all. my father who still live in 93 and a veteran of the second world war from the police had it not been for the red army the anglo-american forces would've never been able to landed in normandy 1944. would have been possible with the exception of hitler's forces having them separated. one thing that appeals was hawkins was remarkable talent at personnel. hopkins is a good talent spotter. if you consider the people he elevated, it was his backing more than anyone who made george
1:32 pm
marshall chief of staff during the war. hawkins had gotten to know marshall during the 1930s. marshall is on the seniority list fairly far down and here he was elevated past these other more senior generals to be chief of staff. marshall never really forgot that. i quote marshall quite liberally throughout my book. after the war he was speaking to one of harry hopkins most caustic critics commend the acid pen columnist for "the new york times," arthur craddock. he said george marshall once told me had it not been for hopkins he was commenced the war would've lasted until 47, not 45 we might not have one. quite a statement from the engineer victory george marshall. hopkins is also responsible for the elevation of kuwait eisenhower who he had become a patron to.
1:33 pm
chimps forestall who became secretary of state. why did they make the decisions they did? why did do the things they did a wartime conferences? using hopkins as a way, trying to understand fdr as well. their shares strategic sense. fdr understood and hopkins shared fdr's convictions that the united states was the only power in the words that have genuinely global interests. the soviet union understandably was largely concerned with fighting the germans. china was fighting for survival on significant numbers of japanese forces in china throughout the entire war. britain did have a global empire that britain had been so reduced by the war that its objectives
1:34 pm
became somewhat more narrow. churchill was hoping once the war was won and once the soviet union was in the war and the americans in the war at the end of 1941 was pretty clear hitler would be defeated and churchill in particular could begin looking at other objectives beyond winning the war for example recouping as much of the british empire as possible. americans had an interest in all that logistical theaters in the world. roosevelt shared with his military chiefs the idea we have mobility. we have air power the ability of not only our own friends but the friends of our allies as well. another very important specific aspect of roosevelt's leadership and when i talk about roosevelt, this is a shared consensus.
1:35 pm
they were really on the same page on almost everything. ask me later where they differ because a diverse and carries fascinating areas. europe first why. it is not guaranteed when the united states attacked at pearl harbor. it is not guaranteed the united states will process in seeing hitler as its primary thread. many countries and dare i say administrations in american history would've run off off and got distracted by this insane japan. one recent hitler was elated by the japanese attack on pearl harbor and subsequently declared war on the united states as he believed it might be his salvation, too. americans would inevitably distracted by the far east and hitler was suddenly have time to regain the initiative in the atlantic starting off american allies britain and soviet
1:36 pm
union. didn't happen that way. for some hopkins are part of a consensus that decided a year before pearl harbor whatever else happened it would not be distracted. hitler provided the primary threat to the united states. possibly an existential threat. we now know the german nuclear program didn't get traction, did make the progress our stated and ironically enough it was hitler's very ideology. he guided a lot of science physics programs because of anti-semitism. americans had an advantage. but they were also concerned that they would develop a super weapon. imagine if hitler had a better warhead to now. it might afflict the war near the very end. americans are much more concerned about the threat that hitler posed in a rough ratio
1:37 pm
that we would devote 60% of our production to fighting the germans in 40% to fighting japanese. we forget of course the germans and japanese did not have the luxury of merely concentrating on us. the germans were concentrating 90% of production and military efforts on the red army. we were very fortunate to have the soviet personality. china as well was holding down an enormous number of japanese troops in japan in the sense is the pacific war with one arm tied behind his back in china. the fall of france had a profound impact on the psychology of both hopkins and roosevelt. summit event happened in the war that we forget how profound because it seems so distant compared to barbaro sat on pearl
1:38 pm
harbor in nursing the subsequently happened. the fall of france everything was off. of the planning that we had imagined the word be similar to the first world war and who would win for would win forces at some point in france about opposition. that was no longer going to be the case as of june 1940. i also think it was important hawkins is part of the contents is to distinguish between a lawyer and stalin. even to this day, people are unable to do this. consider the time when hitler invaded the soviet union on june 22nd 1941. the roosevelt administration made it clear that some are well spoken a press conference later that day. winston churchill spoke about in the house of commons. will come to the aid of the soviet union. my mice have been expended to keep them in the war against
1:39 pm
hitler. but the previous president announced this time is that hitler and allen are essentially the same and of course harry turned and in the senate senator from missouri denounces his mouth equating hitler and stalin. here's the important distinction. many people would argue successfully hitler and stalin both represented equally reprehensible regimes domestically. but hitler presented a genuine primary threat to the united states. hitler had heard it devoured and subdued important american allies like france, for example netherlands, norway, belgium. stalin's regime may not be enviable but he was not presenting a primary threat to the interests of the united states. this is a very important distinction. as i throw challenge again, no one has explained to me how much they will start fiddling with
1:40 pm
video games. no one has explained how the war is won without the red army. i don't know how the grand alliance does it. so what were fdr's object is? we have some insight into this by looking at hopkins. americans had a genuine interest in ending the war soon as possible because of the distinctive challenges the united states face. the u.s. was the only de facto democracy in the grand alliance. let me explain that. britain had not had a general election since 1935. riggs has been in politics until after the d-day. 10 years. if you buy elections but bowa said. americans continued. we had a presidential election on the right technically in the war. we had a midterm election of 42,
1:41 pm
another presidential election were before. why was this important? america was more sensitive to public opinion than any other country. if the public decided the cost of continuing the war was not worth it, when you this public support for the war becomes very difficult to continue to prosecute. we had a real interest in ending as soon as possible, minimizing casualties but remember super weapons, prolonging the war unnecessarily and were roosevelt and his chief military chiefs strongly differed to winston churchill look in and direct approaches to europe possibility of landing in the balkans might unnecessarily prolonged the war. it will concern in washington i think has been forgotten that the longer the war went on the more likely that hitler would
1:42 pm
develop a super weapon that might make it more difficult to ultimately subdue him. limiting u.s. casualties was a factor. fdr had four sons in different branches of the military. as hopkins did have three sons. steve then come in 18 years old was killed in february 1944. a couple of interesting observations about that. if hopkins as such is bengali, if he had used his power correctly can you think he would've been able to protect his sons. you have a high-ranking government official having his son killed in the pacific and when you consider subsequent administrations were so many people found creative ways it fascinates me. god could correct me but i think it might've been jimmy roosevelt who said after the war he was almost sorry one of the four brothers was not killed because
1:43 pm
he thought that would've shut the critics. even including himself. was a lot of hopkins shared the idea of utilizing the alliance advantages. consider this. i would argue having to do the access in a relatively short period of time in three and half years since the united states is in the war was one of the greatest achievements of any allies among nations in the history of the world and this was in part because they put a real emphasis i'm using advantages of an alliance. the axis alliance works contrary to each other. they didn't work in a way harmoniously helped each other's entries. the soviets, british and chinese all try to work in younger patients who are to each other's advantage. second front in europe was a real concern that the americans to shorten time of the war.
1:44 pm
i would argue those who believed in world conquest because we didn't have a lot of this somewhat hysterical rhetoric that's almost a reincarnation of hitler. stalin wanted to conquer all of europe i don't know why he was -- pretty tame by standards of television. i don't know why stalin was plagued with the americans and british to make a landing as soon as possible in europe. if you want to conquer europe the red army could have done that on its own ultimately without its landing in the west. keep in mind soviets did obtain a nuclear weapon in 1949. they didn't use it. does anyone in this room are watching at home believe for a minute and hitler obtained a nuclear weapon that he would have hesitated to use it at all. pretty enormous differences
1:45 pm
between the menace of solid on the soviet union versus hitler and not to germany. let me conclude by saying hawkins did believe the relationship of the soviet union could be managed. this doesn't apply the cold war was avoidable but i do think it is wrong to assume the cold war was inevitable. if you've read my book you will no hopkins did believe there was a formula for managing relations that would never be as easy as it was during the war, that hitler had a healthy alliance together and made it relatively easy to work together. but that didn't necessarily mean there has to be a cold war confrontation. even decades after roosevelt was dead, we had sporadic periods of the soviet union. and his sons bow as the model
1:46 pm
hawkins and roosevelt were pursuing. they understood stalin was a management problem. didn't mean you have to have a cold war confrontation. roosevelt and hopkins did not believe in the false dichotomies of confrontation or peace. there are always other options in between. i am going to stop here because i know with this fascinating subject there's probably lots of questions that i look forward to answering this. thank you. [applause] thank you. as bob mentioned come up to the microphones you can hear it on c-span. >> i have a question concerning the extermination of concentration camps. how much of hopkins know about this and we hear stuff about how roosevelt and all this stuff
1:47 pm
shouldn't have been. what do you have to say about the source of things? >> hopkins himself was not principally are immediately involved in this issue. his portfolio is largely managing relations among the key members of the grand alliance. sumner welles was much more involved in this issue. the larger question which i am by no means an expert on about the possibility of bombing auschwitz we have to also look at this from the perspective of military technology and the just ask. a conference a number of years ago, maybe even decades ago about the holocaust. the roosevelt library and hide park. one paper in particular struck me that a lot of discussion about the issue is motivated by a sincere desire to express factor do something.
1:48 pm
one of the problems at the time was a senior military officials believed anything that might have been done. nothing could've been done until early 44. one of the reasons why 42 was the high water mark of the german empire after germany's loss began to be rolled back to some extent. nothing could've been done majestically until early 44. there was some discussion about this. eisenhower stuck to the idea that nothing should be done majestically delayed the end of the work. the americans were confronted similar reasoning. they had a great deal but to do
1:49 pm
so with the finite resources you had at your disposal by prolonged the war. the general feeling was the sooner germany was defeated and accepted the sooner the agony of europe and the rest of the world when and. >> thank you. >> other questions? >> mark portman, working on the prior u.s. entry into world war ii. but you have talked about is the urgency to get the work done and yet everything prior to u.s. entry into the war involves so much ambivalence about u.s. entry into the war from the administration. wondering how you equate what happened before pearl harbor.
1:50 pm
>> my feeling is in part with a fall of france by particularly hitler's invasion of the soviet is sometimes hard to know because fdr is an extraordinarily complex person and he doesn't think too much in terms of binaries. as i say again there's gray areas and opinions perverse about increased and it is moving in the direction of understanding american entry into the war was inevitable that we would not be able to remain out of it. his political leadership was such he wanted to be pushed into the war by the actions of other people but also by american public opinion. the interesting analogy here is lincoln's desire in a civil war to be sure the south fired the first shot because this would be important in terms of what we call optics. import the world knew the south
1:51 pm
started the war from the border states in the south started the war and people on the fence in the north were ambivalent. i'm working on a project. bob mentioned a second make a shameless self-promotion. very much related to the republican internationalist a robust advocate for intervention into his administration in june june 1940. there is no paper trail of course because roosevelt does a lot of things that we just don't have the evidence for. you can tell in advance he says to your worse. go out there and take charge of the bully pulpit and say we should've gotten out of the war yesterday. that is fine. i'm not going to reprimand you. he likes maxtor in the south is trying to drive the public opinion and public debate.
1:52 pm
fascinating moment when hitler attacked the soviet union cannot send the the letter on june 23rd the following day and says now that heather is distracted the soviet union, this is the moment for us to strike in the atlantic because he's vulnerable. and roosevelt's reaction is no. we still want hitler for someone to make the first move. this is important in terms of the politics. i'm convinced roosevelt knew we would end the war but was playing a game very much like link in in 1861 of one in her entry the work to be such that it not only would make it easier to prosecute the war was a larger degree of public support but also the relevant to how the world felt about us.
1:53 pm
>> i realize this is an extremely speculative question. i am wondering if there's any indication you have got hopkins would have remained in government administration, et cetera after the war for a longer period of time to help manage the cold war issues and spend so much of the cold war seems to have been driven by attitudes in the u.s. and politics here, do you think he could have helped tamp that down a control that more? >> excellent question. we have evidence that hawkins is trying to do that after roosevelt died. hopkins did go to moscow in may 1945 sent by president truman to try to recover the relations that existed prior. we forget. we so desperately need at the soviet union. we didn't know the atomic bomb
1:54 pm
is going to work. it wasn't tested until mid july. we agreed tentatively as far back as tehran, december 43 at the red army would join our war in the far east and an ipaq with japan which they did and this would be an enormous contribution. we overlook the fact contribution was such they went into manchuria and the red army was incredibly successful. marshal in particular thought we might be fighting long after japan itself had been subdued because there were a million japanese settlers and manchuria to that might go on for some time. paul is most important was diplomacy because japan in their deluded state in 1945 held out hope they kid hold on to
1:55 pm
surrender by using the good offices of the soviet union to pressure the united states and the soviet union declared war on japan the only avenue they had to send this sort of unconditional surrender was game over for japan. we forget the vital role of soviet diplomacy play. hopkins wanted to clean up the house. roosevelt was dead. maybe that he could get healthy enough that if the president needed him he could call upon him to go on further missions to the soviet union. hopkins wanted to be high commissioner in germany after the war. george marshall ultimately becoming secretary of state and the marshall plan the idea started with hopkins and 44 saying i would really love to be in germany after the war doing for germany what we did during the depression. how about adobe a pa, rebuilding infrastructure in germany and
1:56 pm
thus rebuilding the economic engine of europe. so hawkins began to transition and get interested in postwar reconstruction and that would've been his ideal job in the high commissioner in berlin. he might've been ideal defensive is the only american and other roosevelt was dead to the soviets so trusted and he might have been able to promote better relations with the soviets. perry with a public official. he liked power and i can even see him around the summer of 45 realizing us is going to be relevant to the truman administration and maybe dangerous to be perceived as the softest person that administration. he has remarkably good relations of people becoming important and powerful ultimately george marshall april harriman, but
1:57 pm
harry is savvy enough and sure enough that he has to keep his relations with those people loping. he can't become like joseph davies or someone who is ultimately not called upon. he has this pragmatic stand said he is the one person stolen continues to trust and will meet with him at anytime of the day as long as they want to talk. but he also needs to retain some sense of political viability in washington as well. as you say it's complete the speculative. we no roosevelt's grand design for managing the soviet union was abandoned by his successor ultimately in part because look at the people there to carry it out. henry wallace is live from the ticket and 44. harry hopkins health is
1:58 pm
faltering. the people who roosevelt who had asked to carry the war was also to a roosevelt himself thought be the balance there. doesn't matter if the state department or whoever is generally anti-soviet. i am still here. he wasn't there after april 12 1945. other comments or questions? we have time for one more question. >> you are going to experiment upon the views that differ between fdr. >> thank you for the question. hopkins portfolio with alliance management. i even have a chapter where i call the time the catalyst for the grand alliance. there were areas where he and roosevelt diverse. one area that surprise people is churchill. we have romanticized it to the
1:59 pm
point was another church or a starring in their own. but you have to understand roosevelt represented a nation and he was very hard about american interests and roosevelt always had the delight all friendly, avuncular manner that people sometimes misperceived as being agreement as opposed to good manners. relations between roosevelt and churchill were more complex than many best-selling books have led us to believe. so much so that roosevelt pushed harry ford, gaelic added goodman said roosevelt could get exasperated by churchill's late-night, long monologues. it's about the roosevelt wartime conferences, you talk so much the interpreter would loose track and churchill would be oblivious and continue to talk over the interpreter.
2:00 pm
so hawkins managed church hill. it was hopkins who would go and find churchill still in bad drinking a bottle of wine for breakfast. roosevelt didn't have as much tolerance for these peculiarities of churchill scared her. they are very close to stalin and closer agreement on not. but they differed was france. roosevelt as you know did not have a lot of time for childers to go. hopkins in a sense. the goal in a sense is a french version of winston churchill and de gaulle might be the right man to fill product and to try to
2:01 pm
remove the stain of the surrendering the occupation. hopkins was willing to endure an enormous amount of humiliation near the end of the war merely because hopkins is the kind of person who focused on the larger picture. this is about the future of france and if europe is going to be healthy after the war it would need a healthy democratic france after the war. roosevelt and hopkins is and hopkins desecrated by watley but were generally compatible when it came to joseph stalin. i think we have time for one more. thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you all. [inaudible]
2:02 pm
2:03 pm
>> my name is ashley weaver, i am the director of alumni relations here at young america's foundation, and my first entree into the foundation was as an intern at the reagan ran a. so i'm happy to be -- ranch. so i'm happy to be here for this event featuring martin greenfield. for those of you new to our program and watching on c-span young america's foundation is the premier outreach organization for the conservative movement. we introduce thousands of young people to the ideas of limited government, individual freedom, strong national defense and traditional values through our conferences, internships campus lectures, young americans for freedom chapters, also through our center for entrepreneurship and free enterprise and the national journalism center. many of our interns are here
2:04 pm
with us today. in 1998 young america's foundation stepped forward to save the western white house rancho dell city yea low so we can pass on president reagan's ideas to future generations. president reagan committed himself to reaching young people through his ideas, and this goal is central to our mission. for more information on our mission or our program, you can visit or call 1-800-usa-1776. to introduce mr. greenfield, i would like to introducewomenton hall. wynnton was an attendee of our 1995 atlanta regional conference, and he is one of our most successful alumni. wynton is the owner of wynton hall and company responsible for numerous new york times best selling books. he has written 18 books six of
2:05 pm
which became new york times bestsellers. his clients include top hollywood producers and actors, cabinet secretaries, billionaires nba stars heisman trophy winners fashion icons and military heros. wynton's published work has appeared in virtually every major periodical in america including "the new york times," "usa today," "presidential studies quarterly," "politico" and many others. he is the managing editor at breitbart news s a frequent media guest on outlets like fox news, and was a featured commentator for the bbc news presidential documentary "presidential hollywood." in addition serving as a young america's foundation director, wynton has served on the prestigious national task force on the presidency and public opinion and is a former visiting fellow at the hoover institution
2:06 pm
at stanford university. i'd like to introduce you to wynton hall. [applause] >> thank you very much for that gracious introduction and thank you all for being here for this very special event. i want to thank the leadership of ron robinson who has made this possible and all the hard work that kirby wilbur, pat coyle and many others have put into what i think is going to be a very memorable event for all of us. as we know with what every day that passes, we have less access to those holocaust survivors who are the keepers of so much history. and it was one of the great, humbling privileges of my career as a ghost writer is and collaborator to get to help share with the world mr. greenfield's story. and i want to share a little bit about what that life means and what it was to get to be a part of this and to introduce him. you may have seen cmn and many, many, many other places, abc
2:07 pm
news have done specials on mr. greenfield. and what's really interesting is that they focus on not just the horrors he endured as a holocaust survivor as a 15-year-old boy who found himself at auschwitz with all of his family members being murdered and basically becoming an orphan. but they also focus on the hopeful, most beautiful side and that is as most of you are aware martin greenfield, according to gq magazine and every other fashion icon magazine is america's greatest living suit maker for fine, tailored, custom suits for celebrities. and just to give you kind of a little bit of a snapshot, because he's too humble to say it himself, basically anytime you've ever watched a movie you've seen a martin greenfield suit. and earnly when -- certainly when you've looked at politicians. leonardo dicaprio and toby mcguire wore in great gatsby which won the design award for
2:08 pm
an oscar this man right here. those are martin greenfield suits. al pacino's suits in "scent of a woman," martin greenfield suits. wall street and wolf of wall street, martin greenfield suits. i i think you see where this is going. basically, everything that's cool and awesome is martin greenfield touch. also jimmy fallon, his suits are made by martin greenfield and tailored by martin greenfield, and also four u.s. presidents you may have heard of. president eisenhower, who actually liberated martin and became his hero as he'll i'm sure, talk about. he then later got to make suits when he became president eisenhower which he considered a great victory and tribute. he also made suits for president ford, president clinton and president obama. so whatever your feelings about president obama, i think we can all agree he looks very dapper. [laughter]
2:09 pm
but nevertheless, many other great political leaders as well. senator dole he made suits for senator dole, and also secretary rumsfeld don rumsfeld, and many others. but i want to beyond all his accolades and star power and mr. hollywood and entertainment here, i want to share with you a little bit about what it was for me to get to be a part of this. and it was the most humbling thing. as was graciously stated i've done many, many books, but getting to be a part of martin's story was one of the most challenging and humbling things i've ever experienced. to have to endure the emotions and the feelings that went into what he endured. just to quickly introduce his background, he grew up in the car faith january mountains in czechoslovakia in an idyllic beautiful winter village wonderland type of home, upper middle class family. his father was an engineer. and then history came crashing in, and his family was rounded up, they were taken and sent to
2:10 pm
auschwitz. the second day was the last time he ever saw his father and/or any of his other family members. and from that point forward as a 15-year-old boy, he had to survive a hell unlike any of us can even fathom. and he did that with grace and courage and quite frankly a beautiful soul in the midst of it. as he was going through that experience, i'll read you a short passage from his book to introduce him he also would then be transferred to buicken valid which was also one of the largest death camps, as you know. and there he would search frantically to try and find his father. he did not know his father was still not with us, but would do so in vain. he then realizes at liberation that he's an orphan in a world without any family and is all alone. and so he searches throughout europe for many years trying to find any member of his family he can, and he finds no one. and is so he then -- so he then is through u.s. services, connected that there are family
2:11 pm
members in america distant relatives that he has and he didn't know about. and so he arrives in new york, you can imagine coming in on a ship at night and never, not having a penny, not knowing the language, and through a rainy new york night he sees the statue of liberty for the first time. and doesn't really understand the history of it, but knows it must be something amazing because he's looking at what he says is the most beautiful city. and be he is hard core brooklyn. this is mr. brooklyn right here, and if you want to talk to him about why brooklyn's the best place in the world, he will tell you until you're blue in the face. so he gets off the boat, and he's greeted by a distant aunt. and they take him to their home. and so they start a journey at 19 years of age without any knowledge of any again, money or any knowledge of the language, and he starts sweeping floors at a factory a fashion factory called 3 gs clothing which was at the time the premiere men's custom suit maker in america.
2:12 pm
thirty years later he buys the factory. so he works his way up from sweeping floors to becoming an amazing entrepreneur and employing all made in america 125 people at martin greenfield clothiers in brooklyn and still in the same building that he started whenever he came to america. a lot of amazing things happened along that journey. the first time that he was introduced to a tour of new york was quite interesting. he had come from a world where people were suffering and starving literally walking skeletons. and his his aunt was driving him around the town, and he saw a huge building and a massive line out front of this building. and he said, he said, wynton, when i saw this, i became crestfallen. i couldn't believe, i thought that things were better in america. and so i told my aunt, i said this is the longest bread line i've ever seen, this is horrible. i thought this was a place of opportunity. and she said, honey that's not a bread line, that's yankee
2:13 pm
stadium. [laughter] they're waiting for tickets. [laughter] so he became a full fan of baseball is and american life, and you will find no bigger patriot. if you want to find someone who will tell you about the goodness and the virtue of the american spirit, he will be the first to tell you, and i look forward to hearing it. i want to read you just two quick passagings. he's asked me to give you a little bit of insight into the. the hell and the heaven of his story. the first comes from his first chapter in "measure of a man," chapter two "inside auschwitz," wherein he takes us inside a place that most of us cannot even imagine. and here is a portion of that a experience. many days inside auschwitz i was afraid i would die. and then afraid i wouldn't. we were surrounded by death and darkness madness and murder. and the vicious precision and
2:14 pm
regimented order of the place made the moral insanity all the more bizarre and cruel. each morning around 4:30 we were stirred from our sleep lined up and counted in a ritual known as roll call. my heart would start jumping in my chest. a nazi soldier would whirl his baton and scan the line with his eyes while another called out the list of prisoner numbers. any sign of illness or fatigue was cause for being pulled from the line and sent to the crematorium. day and night the ovens burned. the smoke spewed up from the soaring brick chimney and belched the vaporous remnants of corpses into the air. at night you could see the flames spitting against the blackened sky. still, no one in the camps talked to me about the cream tore ya. whether that was because i was just a boy or because i no longer had a father by my side to speak piercing truths to me, i do not know.
2:15 pm
but i could smell that something was horribly wrong. at home and in most civilizations, a clear moral order structured our daily lives; hard work justice fairness integrity. these virtues produced predictable fruits, but not in the concentration camps. the germans killed for any reason or none at all. it was futile to try to discern their logic, because there was none. if a nazi was angry, he might kill you. if a nazi was happy, he might kill you. it made no difference. the dehumanizing randomness of the murders suffocated my sense of hope just as hitler and his hen-men had wanted it -- henchmen had wanted it too. it was a systematic psychological lynching, a strangling of the human heart's need to believe in the rewards of goodness, a snapping of the moral hinge on which humanity swings. soon, and much to my shame, i
2:16 pm
became anesthetized to death, numb to depravity. some primal survival switch inside me had been temporarily flicked on that allowed me to submerge the emotions generated by this evil scorching my eyes. i witnessed dozens of t shootings and helped carry scores of corpses. sometimes a dead body would be intact and appear to be sleeping. other times a bullet would rip through a prisoner, spilling out organs or shatter a skull exposing chunks of brain. but as the days passed, no matter its condition a body soon became just a body, a sallow, bloodless, ganging object that must be lugged, heaved atop a pile or dropped in a hole. at 15 i had become an undertaker. contrast that with the beauty and the humanity and the love for america and family that you
2:17 pm
find in his last, closing passage of "measure of a man," wherein he recounts the things he endured and the triumphs he enjoyed, and there's no more joyful man than martin greenfield, who you're about to meet. this is how he closes. only one explanation for my improbable life makes any sense. god allowed america to make me possible. i might have died a dozen times over, burned in the offense at auschwitz or slain at buchenwald or some other camp as my family and six million others were. i might have fallen on the death march, i might have been caught giving rations to the dying or been blown up when the bombs rained down. i might have never found my relatives and known only the joy family brings. i might have wandered through life with an empty heart, never finding and marrying my dream
2:18 pm
girl -- that's arlene. [laughter] i might never have experienced god's gift of children wonderful sons whose hearts and talents help build and grow my only-in-america dream. but for some grace-filled reason against all lodgic and probability -- logic and probability, god led americans to fight for me, to save me, to claim me as their own and to nurture me with opportunities and help build a home where i could love and raise my family in my beloved brooklyn. i'm left with nothing but gratitude and joy for my life. some things, it turns out are beyond measure. martin greenfield. [applause] >> well, thank you very much.
2:19 pm
now i don't know where to start or where to finish. [laughter] because here i came to speak to you all, it's probably the best place for me to come. because of the way i feel about america. about the first you heard -- the past you heard the past i lived through because i was accidentally born a jew and i was accidentally born to the best family in the world. they brought me up at 10 years old when we were occupied, i was a man. i was a man because i had a grandfather who was religious who taught me about god, and i had a father who was brilliant and my family the way they
2:20 pm
brought me up, because they knew something is going to happen to us. because i remember my father talking to his father to my grandfather abraham. and grandfather said to my father, we're safe here, we're safe here because, you know, hitler board us. and my father said he's three steps from us, we'll never be safe because the -- [inaudible] shouldn't deal with hitler and trust hitler. so i grew up hearing that, hearing that meant a lot to me, you know why? because use your own head, all of you. like i did. it's not follow somebody, somebody there. we are all born alike knowing
2:21 pm
nothing. what depends, we are born with at least to a family. our job is simple. parents have to bring you up. teachers have to teach you. well, guess what you guys have to do? you have to think for yourself, not follow anybody just learn and never stop learning the rest of your life. i'm 86 years old. i was the youngest survivor. i am still learning there young people if somebody has an idea. i never stop not listening to somebody or somebody else. this is the way i was brought up to do. to listen and to learn. and the concentration camp, i don't want to talk about because i took my son to europe.
2:22 pm
he wanted to see where i was born and all over. be -- but i would never step a foot back to auschwitz for one reason because it was unbelievable for a five-and-a-half-year-old kid to smell, to learn and to be so close to everything there, to be beaten up, to be questioned. you heard -- i don't want to say those things, but i survived, my march, my death march because i always felt that somebody strange -- i sold my skin off my back, send me away on a mirage. i never knew the guy, but maybe god send him. i always believed for some reason that i never lost touch with god even when i didn't find
2:23 pm
anybody alive. we are all going to die when we're born. it doesn't matter what religion or whatever you are. whatever you're born, that's what you're going to die. but then i'll make it short about coming to america. coming to america -- and my uncle discovered me. he knew my friend who really without him the book wouldn't be written like this. i'm a very good maker of suits but he's a hell of a writer. [laughter] together we were a great combination. because the book whoever reads, i get calls from china because of cnn, i get calls from all over the world. i will go to a high school i spoke to two weeks ago in
2:24 pm
connecticut, i got 58 letters from the kids that listened to me. there was one of the fathers wrote me a letter that his daughter was kissing my hand because she send me to get a suit from you because of what you were talking to. and i spoke to them like i speak to you. but my feeling about this organization is i felt like this when i first came to america without green card. when the guy said to me i get off the boat through an interpreter five times "you're an american," and i told him five times "i'm a czech." and he finally convinced me. so i thought i died and was in heaven because i heard in america they were talking to my family from there they must have communicated. because you remember, my
2:25 pm
grandfather was a very famous person from a famous family, with a religious family. because his nephew is the first jewish admiral in america. and i met him too because he had a picture there of -- i remember what it was. i left it there because they didn't let us take any pictures anyway, the germans. but i met the admiral. so his -- and i met his father with the long beard here and there in america. and so i am an american. and i play cards, i'll be honest with you because i like to play cards, and i lost the last spot. i had the best hand, three kings and two aces, but somebody had three fifes and -- fives and got
2:26 pm
the fourth five and now i'm broke. so i borrowed $10, it took me a while to convince hymn i'll pay him back and i did pay him back. and that's how i came to this country. when i came to this country the first week as god is my witness i worked, they showed me a job, i should be a floor boy. and i did whatever they asked me. so mr. rosenberg who was my boss, i said can i talk with you? because he spoke my language. i didn't speak english but he spoke, he came from the same area. i said i need $35 but i can't work here. he said, why? because nothing made sense to me -- to me the whole week. if it didn't make sense to me, i didn't do good for you. he said a what do you mean you didn't do -- no, because nothing
2:27 pm
was accomplished because nothing made sense. we've got to do things different. if i worked this way in concentration camp you and i would never have met each other. i'd be dead. but that doesn't mean what i have a few ideas you listen to me. and guess what? he liked my ideas. and from then on i started as a floor boy. six months later i was promoted to be an assistant supervisor. the union threw me out because i was now boss. i was not boss. i had a different job. oh you can't belong to the union because you're on the other side. that didn't make sense to me either but i continued to work there. and we had, you know how many tailors? 565 tailors and they were mostly italian and a few jews. tough people. i became in charge of all of
2:28 pm
them. and it took me -- my boss showed the way i was doing things, was always trying to learn and to try to become better than my teachers. and i got ahead. and i became a supervisor. and i became a this and i became this, and eventually my boss asked me to go sit in the park with him. i said, why we go in the park? we meet in the office. no but i'm going to ask you only the birds will hear. because in the office, the men would be talking, everybody knows everything. i said, so he has assembled for me and we meet across the street from his apartment on central park, and he said to me today i want you to be in charge of my factory. i know you're young but you deserve the job.
2:29 pm
and i want to pay you a lot of money, those days. not going to tell you how much but i won't tell you -- my sons were already in college and my good wife here that we've been married 58 years, i don't know how she puts up with me, but she takes it. but, so he offered me the job. and he said the man that is your boss now, you have to fire him. i said, my boss? i said fire? he works for you, not for me. you are the owner. if you want to fire him, you fire him but you shouldn't fire him. you appointed him. the man worked here so many years. he wasn't qualified, you shouldn't have given him the job. well, you've been doing the job for him. he says -- i said no. he has to stay. so he says to him i'm going to
2:30 pm
have -- can't pay you all that money. listen, pay him whatever you've been paying him, i'll take less. after a while he retired anyway, and i took over. but i had -- it's all of you here that i talk, most of you maybe somebody one born in america are born in america. and i wrote the book the way my -- he's my brother now -- told me why i wrote it for america, to thank america. because i was shocked that there were so many survivors who survive, and they didn't do it. but i had to do it. because five million of us are alive today concern -- not they're all alive, some of them died -- but they were saved by the americans.
2:31 pm
i know the past that roosevelt send back 300 jews to die who came here on a boat, but that was history to me. that i read about. but that doesn't matter, what roosevelt did. that's all mattered to me, what the soldiers did in america. and what they have to do all the day, because the only thing that work is strength, strength. america is the strongest country in the world. you don't go around apologizing you go around fighting for the right of america. because everybody wants to come here. [applause] everybody. they all want to come here because there is no place like it. you can't change it. and don't try. nobody should try to change it. and it only takes the young
2:32 pm
people. in my business the most important people are the young people. because you are the guys that dress. the older people like us we need a wedding we need a funeral for a suit. you need, you are our future. because you dress to become and you are the future. we are older and you are our future. that's how i look at you and that's what i expect of you. because you should all do not exactly what you had to do like me, you were born here. if you want to be president you work hard enough, you could become president. maybe i am smart enough to be president. but how could i become? i wasn't born here. i cannot do it. but you should not the country for granted take yourself for
2:33 pm
granted, because you are luckiest people in the world. but if you don't do nothing with it, then you're wasting it. you're wasting your life, because you have the opportunities to become business. it's not business people who are rich. they don't win lotteries they work hard. [applause] you understand that? but i heard of some place that if you're rich, you won lottery. you don't get lottery. if you're rich, you earn it. and if you earn it, you should keep it. you shouldn't give it away to taxes. [applause] and you have the opportunities here. the opportunities here are to become somebody, become part of the government, become a doctor, become a sailor, become whatever you want. i went to high school while i was here in america.
2:34 pm
the people -- it was the worst high school. they have always 15, 20 police cars i still show you around the high school. just to keep it safe. i went to the principal. you're not teaching these kids to write. we're not teaching -- i don't accuse you. we need to teach them trades. they're not college kids. well, guess what? brooklyn is now the hardest place, where i live, that we help create investment, and these people when i was 80 years old with my family, they made a tape around me. the people that made the first brewery, the people that are carpenters the people are mechanics, they all have businesses because of what i did. encouraged them the teach them trades. not everybody has to be a
2:35 pm
college guy. my education, you want to know? i went tonight school to learn english, to read, to write. p.s., the rest i learned myself. [applause] but i never stopped learning. i never do. i think i read -- i know i get "the new york times" every day. because i need, i'm in the business to find what's going on. they always have good writers and stuff. whether i agree with anything, i'm not going to talk about that. [laughter] but i cannot, when i sleep or when i get up, i cherish my job.
2:36 pm
if you ask me am i retired, i work six days a week. except summertime i take off a few days. because just to work four days. because i'm the happiest still at my job. you know why? because i think i do the best job what i do. my sons follow in my footsteps, and we want to continue. and i hope that if god gives me enough time and life, i will never retire because i love what i do. and the most important thing i tell you all, if you pick something that you like and you work hard, never give it up. you will have become what you
2:37 pm
want to be. but it's always up to you motto blame teachers -- not to blame teachers, not to blame anybody. you've got to have the family to get you started off. if you have a father and mother, you better listen to them to bring you up. because all of us when we're born we know nothing. we're all the same. i helped a lot of kids, a neighborhood you couldn't walk out, you couldn't -- was very dangerous. so i sent young people to school. but i have a dear friend in colin powell and he's still my best friend. three weeks ago was my factory he brought his grandson so i could dress him up for the first time the way i dress him up after he changed his uniform 22 years ago. and he still wears my suits.
2:38 pm
he says the 22-year-old suit still works. the uniform only lasted four years. [laughter] when he answers me, he calls me his brother, his mentor. the relationship. it is unbelievable the kind of people that i know and the kind of people i do -- it's only about my trade. it's the way i do business people, and i was brought up to help people, and i was brought up to share with people, and i was brought up to teach people. if somebody starts to work with me, there are no tailors no more. the tailors that we have in our shop if you come to visit the shop it's just young people, and i make.
2:39 pm
there is very few americans left. there is nothing -- when i came in '47 we made everything in america; the best silks. they closed the silk factory because the water was polluted. then they came in from italy and they said, i'll fix the water. look. and opened up the factory in connecticut, he put in the dye and he said give me a glass and the water, i'll drink it. see if i die. the fish wouldn't die either. and guess what? the factory's there, but they close the factories. they closed the factories all over the world because of the water is bad. why don't you try to fix something instead of putting them out of business? you lose all the jobs. jobs jobs jobs. everything was made in america.
2:40 pm
and today in our factory the only thing is made in america is the suit. we have to buy everything from all over the world because nothing goes out. they put out every -- this is not the way the country was created, to take businesses out. the country was created to create jobs, not to have the government give you money to live. we paid the government money. they have no money. they do our money they pay other people. the jobs are created in america, and we should continue to do that, in my opinion. because there are so many people in america today without jobs, that is just a shame for me because it wasn't like that when i came. and that's all i could tell you and i hope you like what i'm saying.
2:41 pm
and if you have any questions i'll be happy to answer them. thank you. [applause] >> if you have a question, please state your name and where you're from first. >> my name's katrina, i'm from washington state. and i'm an intern here at young america's foundation. i was wondering what you think the greatest issue facing our nation is today. >> she wants to know what is the greatest issue facing our nation today. what's the biggest -- in america to me? >> yes. >> right now i feel very
2:42 pm
uncomfortable with the world with what is going on, the isis because we don't show enough strength to try and get involved and create with the europeans together to fight to save the country. because i am not so optimistic about the way it's happening today. >> blake adams i'm with the -- blake add answer i'm with the american conservative -- adams, i'm with the american conservative. hold on. many your own words -- in your own words what does it mean to be an american? >> what does it mean to be an american? >> what? >> what does it mean to be an american? >> what does mean? [laughter]
2:43 pm
well it means to america i could make you another half hour speech here. [laughter] to me, to me when i came here, the first two months i wanted to go to washington. i couldn't speak. i met somebody, it was my father's friend, he had some kind of a business. his daughter came, and i had to go to the congress there to see the building, and i met a janitor -- >> [inaudible] >> and he wanted to know more about me than i would know about him, and he start telling me about america and what i should read, what i should do, this this. then he became vice president he still was in touch with me because they taught me so many things about this country that i didn't know about how the country was created, by who by what and then.
2:44 pm
because i learned everything because when i went for my citizenship papers ask they asked me three four stupid questions and i answered them and i asked the guy a few of my questions, he couldn't answer me any. [laughter] i said, i'm paying you, why don't i take your job? [laughter] that's how i feel about america. i feel about america that it's created an unbelievable way these people. and i read everything about them, that they put together something that was not in existence no place in the world. and now people want to change it. don't change it. it's got to be the way they did it. that's why we are so free here. that's why everybody wants to come here. but they should come here legally. thank you. [applause] >> hi, mr. greenfield. it was great hearing you talk
2:45 pm
today, and my question for you is one that i also asked your lovely wife, arlene. do you think that another holocaust could ever happen? >> do you think another holocaust could happen? could the holocaust happen again? >> no. i don't think that the holocaust is going to happen again. first of all, there is a country called israel. and i believe if there is a country called israel that the holocaust might have never happened. because it should never happen. i mean i understand what happened in other countries before the war when they were fighting with each other and there was a lot of killings because you weren't the same as me and whatever. of the only way that holocaust
2:46 pm
will never happen is what i talk to you very young guys. girls too, excuse me. young people. okay. that will be a better sentence. so not to follow leaders. if you don't have a leader that leads you in that direction like hitler did like stalin did it's all the end. all those ends don't work. you should use your head, then never could there be any kind of holocaust against blacks, against whites. you know, i don't see no color. i work with everybody. the first time i saw a black man in my life is when i was liberated from the concentration camp. i never saw one in czechoslovakia. i only heard of negro when they showed a picture.
2:47 pm
and now i see a truck driver, a soldier. and guess what? as a young kid i see another one, no gun. i see another one no gun. then i ask the right person who could communicate this. the guns and the truck? he says, no, they don't have no dun gun. so the germans can kill them and they can't kill the germans? is that right? so i found out that's wrong too. if he's a black man or he's whatever he shoot gun like the white one. what's difference? to me, it doesn't make any difference. and that's what i mean about your yes is very good -- your question is very good, but it's got to be people who don't follow leaders who are going in the wrong direction. thank you. [applause]
2:48 pm
>> my name is julie and i'm from california, and i'm an intern at young america's foundation. and i was wondering if you have any suggestions for bringing those outsourced jobs back to america. >> how do we bring jobs back to america. >> put me in charge, i'll bring the jobs back. [laughter] [applause] that's all you did. give me the job folks, and i'm going to take off from my place, and i show you how fast i create jobs. without a problem. there are people who want to start businesses and people who want to do this but look what we have. look what's happened when they show us -- i am a union shop. i don't know if you know that. we almost went broke because all of a sudden our insurance went up triple. and they're union people. i thought the government was on the union side. but once you have union, they're my people.
2:49 pm
i myself a reporter because they work for me, they have to make a living. and it's not because of the money, but now we can afford to pay their insurance because we can't afford it to do. you can't stay in business. you have business taxes, you have union taxes, you have this here, you have that there, you have to have a union, you have to have -- there's no, there is no way to get started because there are too many reductions to start business -- restrictions to start businesses. that's why i say put me in charge, that i should be able to do it my way and you'll see how it's going to be where reagan started. slowly then. i make it faster. [applause]
2:50 pm
>> my name is, my name is rudy, i'm from minnesota. i'm living in washington d.c. why do you think there is such a human tendency to deny the existence of evil or to be silent in the face of it? with neville chamberlain or today with isis. >> why do people not believe that there's real e ?ril why won't people believe that there is evil in the world? why don't they want to believe there's evil? >> well, you see the one thing that i cannot change people. i'm trying to talk to young people, because when i came to this country the first job i had, i met a lot of our jewish
2:51 pm
workers. there were dead man because roosevelt had died, they were saying the jewish prayer for him. and they were already -- [inaudible] so i don't know, first i have to find out but when i saw the jewish paper, i could do it. so i take the paper at night, and i read about what they're reading. and i came back. that's when we started fight. i said you're born in this country, you've got a good job. why are you unhappy? and that how i changed some of them, the theories and the ideas. but it was in a very small way, because they were ashamed of i'm
2:52 pm
a kid came from holocaust a refugee knows more than they do. i don't know nothing but i didn't like what was written there in yiddish because i understood every word. so if any one of us communicate sometimes you change somebody's mind. but it's very difficult because there are many people who go in a direction people and there were only some people wrote a certain way that they think if they changed the world to a better way that their arm is going to fall off. they couldn't, they couldn't sign it to switch from one party to another. so i had my own relatives. we can't discuss politics together because we don't have the same idea.
2:53 pm
it's very difficult. but with i agree with you it's a tough job. >> brianna noble from michigan. what were you most surprised about when you came to america? >> what about america surprised you the most? >> america, you know, the first surprise was thatople didn't have food to eat. they were lined up at yankee stadium. that was my surprise. [laughter] but i was not, you know, i was introduced by my relatives, and one of the -- [inaudible] used to work for revlon. and he took me for a trip around, you know, to introduce me to -- so they wanted me to see the real america their way.
2:54 pm
and i washington -- here -- it is not today my favorite place politically, but the best -- i love washington the way it was built and the way it's put together, because of i love, i used to go to philadelphia a lot because i know the history of there, franklin and all that stuff. but i, but i started reading and reading and reading about america, and that surprised me, how it was created. and that's why i feel so strongly about it. that you young people have a chance to keep it that way. not me and not us you. try and keep it up.
2:55 pm
be involved. don't have other people to do it for you. you do it yourself. piece by piece by piece. and guess what? you could change america to be like it was. thank you. prison -- [applause] >> we have time for one more question. >> one more question? >> hi. thank you so much for coming to speak. my name's alex montgomery, i'm from north carolina. i was wondering, i was wondering, what do you think was the key to your business model the key point to running your business that helped it to become really successful? >> what was the key for your business becoming a success? >> the key for my business being a success? me. [laughter]
2:56 pm
i -- you see when you work at something whether it's political or it's producing something, you cannot always just continue to do the same thing. you've got to think of how to do things better. so i divided different systems. system how to measure people. and i was never a tailor, and the custom tailors who were the best tailor, they do things you do six seven times and you have to charge a suit 55,000 and five times -- [inaudible] i figured if i learn how to measure a little bit there's a better quality and a better way to do it. when i started traveling to all
2:57 pm
the stores to measure people, i had to deliver a suit, they want tailors to fix it, it had to be almost 99% finished. and i developed a system, and that's what we have. a lot of the world uses some of the systems that was developed that i have here, that is sitting here. but it has nothing to do that i want credit for that. but in any business, you cannot just take it for granted that there's going to be there forever. all the people whether it's in the banks whether it's in -- [inaudible] whether it's there whether it's in medicine or, whether it's something, it always have to change for the better to be successful. otherwise i would never be successful. because today if you talk about i see some of you wear the short jacket there's -- i make the best one. do you know why?
2:58 pm
because i make quality. and they're tight and they're little. but if you buy mind, you're always going to buy mine. because if look's what you want, pretend you could wear it and it could fit, you could dance, you could sing, you could roll, whatever you want. because it's made that way. and that is a success in my business. and we have, we always go with fashion, fashion fashion. because the men's clothing business is not like the women's that every season they change. it takes about four, five years. but my suits i have suits from 25 years ago when i put one on, if it fits me yet, they think it's a new suit. look. boardwalk empire, if you watch. those suits my grandfather wore. but i know that they didn't have
2:59 pm
too many suits but i made them with this and that, and that's all they wore. and when they asked what is your favorite part in the movie the clothing. i said, you dress me up, you know, i never have a suit. and you dress me up, i'm dressed right. so if i say the wrong thing you'll ask me the question again. the suit solves everything. [laughter] that's what i do can make sure that i continue to make them better. [applause] >> you're watching 48 hours of nonfiction authors and books on c-span2's booktv. television for serious readers. booktv recently visited capitol hill to ask members of congress what they're reading this summer. >> i'm actually rereading now the new jim crow by michelle
3:00 pm
alexander, a very important book for all elected official to read. it really sets out the ramifications and the impact of the, quote war on drugs as it relates to primarily african-american men and families and how laws now that have been passed subsequent to that have really created a new jim crow system because of the barriers and the systemic racial bias in our policies and in our laws. ..


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on