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Color, Communism and Common Sense


In modern literature, anti-communists are generally pictured as scoundrels. On the other hand, left-wing Perjurers and Jail Birds are shown as persecuted lambs.* But there is a special vitriol uncorked for those who have followed communism, and have repented to such an extent that they are publicly willing to stand up and testify against it by word and deed.

The writer of this pamphlet, Manning Johnson, is an example of such treatment. The Supreme Court of the United States used a communist statement in a decision of the majority opinion, as delivered by Justice Felix Frankfurter to brand Manning Johnson as giving “tainted” testimony and cited as a basis for this statement the Communist Party brief. The left-wing papers, including the New York Herald Tribune joyfully took up the cry. Of course, careful investigation shows that Manning Johnson is not a perjurer, and it would be easy to prove this in any court not dominated by such a character as Felix Frankfurter.§

Manning Johnson’s story begins very much like many other Negroes brought up in a religious home. He was inducted into the “party” largely because of the preachings of a communist Bishop (retired) of the Episcopal church, William Montgomery Brown. Manning Johnson is a man of ability and education and felt himself frustrated by his race and color, and fell under the spell of the communist propaganda.

The Communists, however, reckoned without understanding that the man they had enlisted in their cause had, for them, certain dangerous qualities. He had a Christian upbringing; he was intelligent; and he had courage.

His Christian upbringing made him revolt at the obscene immorality of the Communist Party, and its members.

His intelligence made him see through the stupidity of the communist doctrine, and see that he should strive to be a first class Negro instead of an imitation of a third class white man.

His courage made him willing to confess his sins in public and try to expiate them.

It is for this last quality that the Frankfurter Supreme Court and left-wing press can never forgive him.

I hope you will read Manning Johnson’s pamphlet carefully. If you do, you will understand how the communists have used, and are using, certain American Negroes to the detriment of all Americans—white or black.

You will read the story of one Negro who has gone through the fire, and come out tempered steel.

July 22, 1958. Archibald B. Roosevelt



*  As examples, see the New York Times, New York Herald Tribune, and Saturday Review of Literature treatments of Hiss and Oppenheimer.

 See “Decision April 30th, 1956,” page 5 “Communist Party vs. Subversion Board.”

 See exhibit on page 4 [second illustration, above].

§  See adjoining illustration [first illustration, above].

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Chapter One:  IN THE WEB