Back in the old days of China, the emperor built a gigantic wall to defend the country against the barbarians to the North. It stretched for miles across the border, scraping the sky, and wide enough for chariots to pass on top. It remains one of the wonders of the world—perhaps the one man-made object that will be visible from the moon. But as a defense effort the wall was a dud. The enemy breached it merely by bribing a gatekeeper.
We fork over almost all that’s in our national pocket now to be policed around the clock. It would be suicide not to take these precautions, but foolhardy for us to think that they are adequate. Communist screams distract us from our moral health and Christian obligations. It would be heartbreaking, after all the bankrupting military trouble we have been put to, if the bottom fell out of the integrity of the American people and our monumental “Dew Line” became our gravestone just as the “Great Wall” marks the tomb of the Chinese Empire.
We are not imagining things when we express anxiety over the moral condition of America. The soldiers who welched on us in Korea are symptoms. It made us sick to see the way the communes swallowed up the homes in China, but some monster is gulping them down in this country. It will consume a half million homes this year. What will happen to the children? Former Harvard President Conant is scared of the smoldering “social dynamite” in the slums—the dark-skinned teen-ager out of school, out of work. No employer wants him—not even mother. The “west sides” of our cities are crawling with these young criminals until it is “not safe on the White House steps after dark.” There are more female barmaids (not counting barflies) than college coeds. Those poor girls will not ...1
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